3 Common Causes of Hand Pain | New York Hand Doctor

Published on October 14, 2020 by
new york hand doctor

Hand pain can affect every aspect of your life – from keeping you up at night to cooking a meal. Whether the pain is caused by an accident, injury, or a condition that has developed over time, it can pervade everything you do. If you’ve recently suffered an injury or have been living with hand pain for any length of time, make an appointment with a New York Hand Doctor as soon as possible! Many afflictions only get worse with time, and eventually may require a more extensive treatment plan.

Hand pain is relatively common and can afflict anyone regardless of age, gender, or occupation. These are 3 of the most common causes of hand pain:

Arthritis

The hand is made up of many small joints that all work together to create motion, including fine motor skills needed to handle small and large objects. If these complex joints are affected by arthritis, daily activities like tying your shoes or picking up a spoon can be extremely difficult and/or painful. Arthritis of the hand has two main causes: 

Disease

When arthritis occurs due to disease, the onset of symptoms is gradual and the cartilage decreases slowly. The two most common forms of arthritis from disease are osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis

Trauma 

Fractures, especially those that occur on or around the joint, and dislocations are among the most common injuries that can lead to arthritis. Even if properly treated, previously damaged joints are more prone to becoming arthritic in the future. 

Fractures

A hand fracture constitutes a break in one or more of the many bones in the hand.  A broken hand is often caused by a fall, crush injury, twisting injury, or through direct contact in sports. In many cases, a broken hand will heal properly with nonsurgical treatment. Depending on the fracture, this may include wearing a cast, splint or buddy straps for a period of time. For more serious fractures or for fractures that do not line up properly, however, surgery may be required. The most common type of hand fracture is a “boxer’s fracture,” or a fracture to the fifth metacarpal – the bone that supports your little finger. This injury is generally caused by striking an object with a closed fist. If you believe you may have suffered a fracture to your hand, make an appointment with a New York hand doctor as soon as possible!

Trigger Finger

Trigger finger, also known as stenosing tenosynovitis, is a condition that causes pain, stiffness, and a sensation of locking or catching when you bend and straighten your finger. The ring finger and thumb are generally the most affected fingers, but trigger finger can occur on any finger of the hand. 

In a patient suffering from trigger finger, the A1 pulley becomes inflamed or thickened, making it harder for the flexor tendon to glide through it as the finger bends. As time passes, the flexor tendon may also become inflamed and develop a small nodule on the surface. When the finger flexes and the nodule passes through the pulley, there is a sensation of catching or popping. This often causes discomfort and/or pain. In severe cases, the finger may become “locked” or stuck in a flexed position, and straightening it out may require help from your other hand to manually pull the finger back. If you think you may be suffering from trigger finger, contact a New York Hand Doctor quickly, the sooner it can be treated, the better off you will be!

Find a New York Hand Doctor

If you’ve recently noticed hand pain, suffered an injury, or have been living with discomfort in your hand for any length of time, get in touch with a New York hand doctor today! Waiting longer can cause your condition to worsen and the pain to increase. If you have any questions about a potential hand injury or any pain you’ve been experiencing, give our office a call or submit a contact form in the top right corner of this page. We’d love nothing more than to get you back to pain-free living!