14 months of wrist tendonitis for pianist and music director

by Joelle

Hi! My husband is 31 and has been struggling with wrist tendonitis in his right hand for 14 months.

The problem is that he is a music director and his work directly causes more injury. Piano and computer really inflame it. He has undergone the following:
-he is on workers comp so he can take breaks when he needs
-acupuncture for 2 months
-physical therapy with multiple different physical therapists which used ultrasound, stretches, strength building, a sort of localized anti inflammatory which is released into the skin with some kind of charge, and immobilizing wrist braces
-he has had 1 cortisone shot which made things much more painful for a time
-he ices and stretches daily

We have 2 young kids (3 and 1) and it breaks my heart that he cant carry his boys around, can't play piano, can't do anything creative, can't exercise, can't help with anything around the house.

It's like his whole life is taken away. And after 14 months of some progress, today he said it is hurting as much as when the injury first began.

What is there left to do? We don't want to go down the road to surgery. Help please

A really saddened and frustrated wife.


Joshua Answers:

Hi Joelle.

The problem is, as you've noticed, Anti-inflammatory drugs like Ibuprofen, Corticosteroid Injections, Rest, Wrist splints and braces, and iontopheresis and ultrasound and stretching and strengthening don't fix tendonitis, repetitive strain injury, Carpal Tunnel Syndrome, etc.

Thus a bunch of wasted time and effort so far. But that's the state of hospital care in the world of soft tissue injury.

So, moving on.

1. Was he actually injured? Or does he just have pain.

He's probably not actually injured. But as you said, he is inflamed. Constant irritation dynamic. That's what the vast majority of Tendonitis is. A body just stuck in a Pain Causing Dynamic. And you and he just haven't yet learned how to get out of it.

See: What Is Tendonitis

2. History of pain/injury?

3. What's his Vitamin D level? (What's yours, while we're at it?) If you don't know, you should.

4. Tell me what he's doing for icing and stretches.

The bad news is, he's in pain and has been in pain. The good news, so far it just sounds like regular tendonitis dynamic. Reversing it shouldn't be much of a problem, though I am going to tell you to get my Reversing Wrist Tendonitis ebook, as that's where the complete plan is.

Please reply using the comment link below. Do not submit a new submission to answer/reply, it's too hard for me to find where it's supposed to go.

And, comments have a 3,000 character limit so you may have to comment twice.

Joshua Tucker, B.A., C.M.T.
The Tendonitis Expert

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Comments for 14 months of wrist tendonitis for pianist and music director

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Nov 21, 2013
cortisone shots while applying ice therpy, is ok?
by: A

Is it ok to take a cortisone shot while also applying ice therepy or a waste of time?


Joshua Comments:

I'm not a big fan of corticosteroid shots. At best will reduce symptoms for a while, and may make things hurt worse. Personally I'd put the time and effort into ice dipping.

Technically it's 'ok' to both. Ice dipping creates circulation, which is always a good and effective thing.

More on Corticosteroid Injections.

Nov 21, 2013
badminton and squash player. wouldn't be able to do a press up because of wrist tendonitis pain.
by: AnonySquash

I am almost certain I have wrist tendonitis. I think I had something similar before but it healed on its own relatively quickly.

I have a squash tournament tomorrow which I have been anticipating for a whole year... could I do some serious damage if I play? I know it will make it worse. How can I overcome the pain whilst I play?

I don't have access to shots, injections etc.



Joshua Comments:

Hi AnonySquash.

The problem with tendonitis, is that the pain going away doesn't mean that it's 'healed'. It just means that the pain went away but some or all the other factors involved essentially remain the same.

The good thing about tendonitis, is that it's unlikely that you will injury yourself with soemthing like a tournament/play/activity. The pain might shoot way up, but injury is actual damage, and you can have debilitating pain with no damage at all.

Debilitating pain is obviously not great, an in some ways WHO CARES if it's injury or debilitating pain, it's still a problem.

The reason why it's important to know the above is because when you understand WHY you have pain, your relationship to it changes. You can deal with some pain while you do the necessary steps to make your forearms work better again. In other words, pain is no longer frightening when you know how to make it go away.

Read my earlier response above and follow the links, that's the place to start getting your questions answered.

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