Bilateral Wrist Tendonitis - 3 and a half years!
(UK - London)
bilateral wrist tendonitis symptoms drawing
I am a 23 Yr old grad student with 3 and a half years of Bilateral Tendonitis in my wrists. Background story: It all started at the end of my 1st year of University. I was weight training and doing Thai boxing. Whilst doing reverse curls one day I felt a sharp pain in my left wrist on the 'pinky side'. I kept training and doing thai boxing and the pain worsened.
I went to see a physiotherapist and was told I injured my 'Ulnar nerve' and was given wrist splints and was told to not train for a while.
I stopped training but was working in a department store (Harrods) lifting heavy bags during my summer off. The pain then traveled to my forearms and I was then diagnosed with golfers and tennis elbow (Medial and Lateral Epicondylitis).
I stopped using my left arm to lift bags and started using my right arm... and ended up overcompensating on my right arm causing the same condition in my wrist and my forearm.
After finishing my job I then started 2nd year of university and was typing and writing a lot as I had many assignments and notes to write up.
This caused the condition in my wrist and forearms to get worse and the end of my 2nd year I couldn't write for more than 5 minutes without getting pain in my wrist and my forearms.
The condition continued to get worse in my 3rd year. I was also given extra time during my exams due to my condition. I would like to add that by the end of my 3rd year I had noticed that my elbows seemed to protrude more distinctively and every time I would put my elbows on the desk I would get pain starting from my forearm to my wrist (which happens even to this day).
After graduating in 2009 I took off 1 year for my wrists and forearms to repair, as by this point they were very painful. I could not type for more than 3 minutes without pain in my wrist and my forearm (tennis elbow side), I also could not lift any sort of weight and found movement in my wrist painful if I was holding something.
I also found that my wrists would feel stiff and click a lot, which was not present before I had the injury.
From July 2009-February 2010 my wrists were very painful. However by March 2010 I pushed myself to exercise more and do the physio exercises which seemed to help. I started to lift heavier weights however I could not do bicep curls or tricep extensions as they would aggravate my forearms and wrist. What did help a lot was swimming, however I had to drive to the gym which would not help the condition!
I went to Vancouver from July 2010 to the middle of August and on my last week I saw a physio who treated me very well, giving me a treatment of heat, massage/manipulation, ultrasound and stretching. This treatment made my wrists weak but pain free. (I have received this treatment before of manipulation or ultrasound which would help but it wasn't as effective as this recent treatment).
It felt like the treatment released muscles that were not working well but it pushed me back to doing physio exercises from the beginning. When I returned to England my wrists got worse after using the computer. Now it is back to its painful stage where I cannot lift any weights and the physio exercises I do make them hurt more.
During this three year period I have seen many doctors and physios and many of them say that they cannot find a problem. The tests I have had are, MRI, EMG and ultrasound and also many blood
tests. the blood tests at first showed an elevated amount of uric acid and a low Vit D count, however all of that is normal now since my last blood test.
The MRI and ultrasound show that one of my bones in my wrists are a tiny bit longer than the other, and also there a small gap in my wrist (I have copies of these if you would like to see them). However it not conclusive if this happened after or before the injury. The surgeon also looked to see if there was any cartilage tear but there wasn't so I was discharged.The Treatments I have Received:
- osteopathy - manipulation of the wrists and forearm, and also other treatments to my back and shoulder - this treatment I found effective in my 2nd year however after treatment I would go back to typing and writing notes which would not help.
- Chiropractor - involving clicking of the back and wrist.
- Physiotherapy - treatment would either be ultrasound and acupuncture or manipulation and ultrasound (the latter which I found most effective)
- Kineese taping (done after treatment) - which I do believe can help... but further down the strengthening process What aggravates it:
I cannot drive, type for long periods, lift weights and even hold up the phone to my ear. I used to play video games but that also used to aggravate it so i had to sell my XBOX :(!
I would like to add that I also have Bilateral rotator cuff injury which I got 3 years before I got my wrist injuries. I was receiving treatment for this injury but had to stop due to my wrist injury. I have found that when my shoulder hurts, my forearms hurt as well. The shoulder injury may have contributed to the wrist injury but I do not know. Medicine:
I was given Diclofenac Sodium by my doctor when I first received the injury.... this did not help one bit.
Since then I have been taking Vit D tablets, Cod liver oil mixed with Glucosamine and omega 3 tablets, herbal medicine and pineapple enzyme, Bromelain, which I read about.
It has been over a year since I have taken off to repair my wrists and the condition has still not improved. My golfers elbow has subsided and will only rarely appear if it is very bad. I have been unemployed during this period as I cannot type or lift anything. However I have now got myself a job as it is too stressful doing nothing!!
I've also found that when I hurt myself I cannot get better as quick as I used to. e.g. I sprained my ankle 6 months ago whilst playing football (soccer!!!) and usually it would have healed by now, however it's still injured. Also I used to rarely get ill, however I have been getting ill nearly twice a year now.
I would really appreciate it if you could provide any thought on what is wrong, how to deal with it and any other notes.
I have also sent you a sketch of the area which has been affected in the wrist. I have not sent you a forearm sketch as you know what golfers and tennis elbow is!!
Hope to hear from you soon
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Joshua Tucker, B.A., C.M.T.
The Tendonitis Expertwww.TendonitisExpert.com