Trigger Thumb Chronicles

I know it’s not really a chronicle, since it’s just an update on something that’s been going on since July, but I liked the sound of the title.

Basically, back in July, I was awakened by a pain in my hand. I didn’t know what it was, so I went back to sleep. When I finally woke up for real, I couldn’t bend my thumb.

Well, I could bend it, but it sort of clicked into place rather than bending smoothly. I did some research and found that the diagnosis closest to what I experienced was trigger finger (or thumb in this case), when the sheath that surrounds the tendon in the finger becomes inflamed and the tendon no longer moves smoothly through the sheath.

I remembered that my mom had something similar happen to her back in the 1980s. She went to a doctor who told her to wear a splint and it’d fix itself. So I got a splint and. Ow. Near as I can figure, the splint presses down on the inflamed spot and makes it hurt worse.

I got some accommodations arranged at work and hoped that it’d go away, since trigger finger in the thumb tends to be self-limiting, which means it goes away on its own.

It hasn’t gone away. So I went to the doctor and they took a few x-rays and it is trigger thumb, just like I thought. I also have mild arthritis in my left hand (probably also my right, but I haven’t had my right hand x-rayed yet). I got some prescription-strength anti-inflammatories and have been instructed to use diclofenac gel twice a day (speaking of which, I’m late for my second dose). If it doesn’t resolve after two weeks, I need to see a hand specialist.


I can bend it better than I could last week, so maybe it will go away on its own. Or maybe not. We’ll see.

Today’s Gratuitous Amazon Link is for The Rose Code, by Kate Quinn. The Rose Code is about the code breakers at Bletchley Park during World War II. There’s a post World War II mystery involved as well. Just an excellent book.

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