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  • 3136 Horizon Rd., #100
    Rockwall, TX 75032

Specialties

Wrist & Hand

YOUR WRIST & HAND

Your wrists allow you to have full movement of your hands. Within your wrist, you have ligaments that help provide stability in movement.

If you injure these ligaments, you may lose normal mobility and may also experience pain and swelling. Healthy wrists and hands are vital to an active lifestyle.

Carpal Tunnel Syndrome

Repetitive strain can often cause chronic wrist pain. The carpal canal is a closed space located within the mid-area of the palm side of the wrist. It is covered by a thick ligament known as the volar carpal ligament. Inside the tunnel-like enclosed space courses the median nerve and the flexor tendons. It is theorized that because this is a closed space, as pressure builds up with repetitive movements, problems occur and pain is an inevitable result. The patient will feel a numbness and tingling in the areas that are supplied by the median nerve, which runs through the thumb, the index and middle fingers, and through half of the fourth finger on the thumb side. The patient may also experience a weak grip and a loss of fine movements.

YOUR PHYSICIAN WILL EVALUATE YOUR CONDITION TO DETERMINE IF YOU ARE A GOOD CANDIDATE FOR WRIST OR HAND SURGERY.

In some cases, physical therapy and exercise therapy may improve your condition without requiring surgery.

Evaluation

The first step is to have your wrist or hand evaluated by a physician. The physician will consider your symptoms and conduct a physical exam to evaluate your wrist or hand’s strength, stability, and range-of-motion. X-rays, MRIs (Magnetic Resonance Imaging), and additional tests may be required to show internal injuries. Based on your examination, your physician will let you know if surgery is necessary or if exercise (whether at home or through an external physical therapy facility) would suffice to improve your wrist or hand’s function.

  • X-RAYS
    are used to detect bone injuries and malfunctions
  • MRIS
    are used to detect soft tissue and bone damage and malfunction
  • BLOOD TESTS
    may be used to confirm or rule out various types of arthritis

OTHER TESTS THAT MIGHT BE PERFORMED INCLUDE:

  • Tinel’s Test – Your physician will tap on your wrist to check for pain and/or numbness
  • Phalen’s Test – Your physician will ask you to hold your wrists in flexed (bent down) position for about one  minute to check for pain and/or numbness
  • EMG (Electromyogram) – Your physician may use electrodes to check the nerve pathway and muscle  function. These electrodes are painless and have no continuing effect.

THE RESULTS OF YOUR PHYSICAL EXAMINATION AND TESTING WILL DETERMINE WHICH SURGICAL PROCEDURE, IF ANY, WOULD BE NECESSARY TO RESTORE OPTIMIZED FUNCTION.

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Wrist Surgery

With just a few, small incisions, your orthopedic surgeon will cut the transverse carpal ligament and relieve pressure on the median nerve. The procedure is normally done as outpatient surgery and takes approximately 30-60 minutes.

Non-Surgical Treatment

SPLINTING & MEDICATION

Your physician may give you a splint to keep you from flexing your wrist. Since flexing can make your symptoms worse, the splint will keep your wrist in a rigid, straight position. Your splint may be worn during the day and/or at night. Relieving the stress on your wrist will relieve swollen tissues. At the same time, your physician may prescribe medications to aide in your recovery and ease your pain. Do not exceed the amount prescribed without first receiving approval from your physician. Exceeding the prescribed dosage is dangerous and can lead to numerous health hazards and even death.

CORTISONE INJECTIONS

Your physician may suggest cortisone injections to reduce inflammation in your wrist. Some patients may only require one injection, while others may need additional injections to relieve pain and inflammation.

EXERCISE AND PHYSICAL THERAPY

Exercise and Physical Therapy Physical therapy and/or home exercise may be suggested by your physician.  These exercises are designed to slowly strengthen your wrist and increase its  range of motion. The speediness of your recovery will greatly depend on how  dedicated you are to following your physician’s recommendations. Your  physician may also suggest that you use a sling until your wrist is stronger.

Are you suffering from wrist or hand pain? Get treatment today! Lake Pointe Orthopaedics offers surgical and non-surgical options to help alleviate your pain.

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