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Trigger Finger


  • Trigger finger occurs as a result of an enlargement or swelling in a nodule in one of the flexor tendons in the palm. The enlarged nodule can then prevent the passing of the tendon through the tunnels in the hand, resulting in a decrease in motion and catching or locking of the finger.

  • Treatment is usually a single corticosteroid (cortisone) injection. This is curative in over ninety percent of cases except in diabetic patients where the long-term cure rate is only fifty percent. If the injection is not successful or is recurrent, then a quick procedure is done under local anesthesia to open the tunnel.



Frequently asked questions

Q:  What causes a trigger finger?

A:  The thickening or swelling associated with this issue is usually caused by repetitive pressure and/or repetitive digital motion.  Also trauma to the palm may also cause sufficient swelling of the tendon.

Q:  Will the problem return after the injection?

A:  This can frequently be prevented with proper changes in habits or tools that originally caused the issue.

Q:  Is the injection dangerous?
A: The effects that some people associate with cortisone, weight gain, etc., are not caused by the local injection. Diabetic patients may see a small elevation in levels for 24-48 hours after an injection.  Overall this option is very safe. 
Q:  How many injections can I receive?

A:  Up to three injections in the same area is generally considered to be the maximum.  If the condition persists, then more injections likely will not help.

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