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DeQuervain’s Tenosynovitis

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Understanding DeQuervain’s Tenosynovitis

DeQuervain’s tenosynovitis is a condition that involves inflammation of the lining of two tendons*.

They are found on the side of the wrist and at the base of the thumb respectively.

Symptoms of the condition may include pain and swelling.


Above image shows the inflammation of the lining of two tendons*.

Potential Causes

  • Injury or trauma to the wrist region such as fractures.
  • Repetitive movement of the wrist and thumb.
  • Prolonged and repetitive wrist twisting and thumb pinching.

Signs and Symptoms

  • Pain and tenderness over the wrist near the base of the thumb. This is usually worse with repetitive movements of the thumb and wrist.
  • Prominence over the wrist near the base of the thumb may be present.
  • Swelling may be present at the affected site.

Occupational (Hand) Therapy

  • REST! Avoid activities that trigger symptoms.
  • Wear a prescribed splint as recommended.
  • Change the way you perform your daily activities.
  • Perform your exercises as instructed.
  • Perform heat therapy and/or massage as recommended.
  • Learn self-management strategies to prevent condition from happening again.

Your Compliance Is Essential for Therapy to Be Effective!

Other Medical Treatment

  • Your doctor may prescribe you anti-inflammatory drugs.
  • Your doctor may offer you a corticosteroid injection to reduce your inflammation.

Surgical Treatment

The doctor may recommend surgery if there is little improvement from non-surgical treatment.

After surgery please remember to:

  • Keep your wounds clean and dry. Change your wounds-dressing as recommended.
  • Manage your scar as recommended after your stitches are removed.
  • Manage your pain and swelling as recommended.
  • Perform hand exercises as recommended.
  • Change the way you perform you daily activities.
  • Put on your prescribed splint as recommended.
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