What is the most effective treatment for my wrist?

by Kayode T.
(England, UK)

I fell off a horse playing polo almost 2 years ago and injured my right wrist.

Doctor first said my ligament was probably torn. Several x-rays were done and they could not really locate the problem, though the pain was there.

I was told to rest the wrist. So I did for several months; after the pain subsided a little, I started light weights. However after some time, the pains returned but I noticed it was more my thumb than my wrist.

I went back to see my doctor. This time I was told it is an inflamed tendon, though no-xray was done. I was given some tablets which didn't help much.

Now I am at a loss as to what to do as i have pains when i type, when I shake hands, when I turn the key, even when I write since it is my thumb that feels the pain the most.

I am not even keen to go back to my doctor as I have no confidence the right treatment will be administered. Any help will be greatly appreciated.



Joshua Answers:

Hello Kayode.

Ultimately, my first bit of advice is to How To Reduce Inflammation.

Dialing down the Inflammation Process is the first line of defense against ongoing pain. And once that happens we can better identify the exact location of the problem. Right now, I bet it just hurts all over.

And you might as well read up on Inflammation and the Pain Causing Dynamic.

Maybe you have some Tendonitis in the wrist and/or thumb, maybe a torn/healed ligament or tendon injury, a small fracture (healed by now), maybe a little bit of everything.

Regardless of what the injury in there is/was, you definitely have
a chronic state of inflammation happening in there.

On a seperate note, in a perfect world your doctor would have known that ligament and tendon injury really just doesn't show up on x-ray. -Maybe- if it's a drastic tear in a big tendon..

But hopefully a break was ruled out?

More questions to help determine what exactly is going on.

1. Did the x-ray show a fracture or break?

2. Please describe the original injury. How did you fall off the horse? How did you land? Did it hurt immediately or later? How bad?

3. Has it hurt constantly? Randomly? Only with certain motions? Describe the history of the last two years.

4. How is it right now? Where is the pain, exactly? The more detail, the better.

5. What you you do with your hands all day, job and/or hobby wise?

6. What makes your wrist better, what makes it worse?

7. Any other problem in the arm/shoulder/neck/other hand?

I'm sure I'll come up with other questions, but let's start with that and see where we're at.

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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Aug 03, 2009
PART 2 - Falling off a horse...continued, What is the most effective treatment for my wrist?
by: Kayode Thomas

1. the x-ray revealed no fracture or break, so this was ruled out

2. fell of playing polo; stretched out right hand to break fall. it hurt immediately but got progressively worse

3. it has been on and off in the last two years, though never completely without pain. certain movements of the wrist or use of the thumb (which is effectively for every day use) induces some pain with varying degrees

4. right now, the pain is along my thumb not so much my wrist. with every use (typing, opening doors, handshakes etc), i feel the pain

5. what i do with it job wise is largely emails. hobbies had to be stopped: polo, weights, press ups, badminton etc. was advised not to put any pressure on the wrist though i find that my wrist remains firm and strong to lift some weights so not sure what effect that has on the thumb/tendon

6. sleep makes it better. that's about the only time i don't really feel any pain

7. now i am feeling pains in my neck but not sure if connected. i have made an appointment for tomorrow to see an osteopathic clinic i found on your website (Hoddesdon Osteopathic Clinic)


Joshua Comments:


Can you lift weights? Can you do pull ups, pussh ups, bicep curls, etc without pain? But faster movement activities like swinging a racquet hurts?

There is certainly some Tendonitis dynamic in there, as far as tightness and inflammation.

But I'd wager that there is either tendon rip, ligament rip, or one of your carpal bones and/or wrist bone joints was forced into a bad position and needs to get adjusted back. Likely a combination of these factors.

If you were in my office in Berkeley I'd poke around and it wouldn't be that hard to find. I'm curious to hear what the osteopath says.

The pain in the neck may or may not be connected. It's -all- connected, one way or another.

Get back to me after your appointment, let me know what they say. Then we'll set you up with an action plan.

Jul 30, 2014
Same issue, fell off a horse playing polo
by: Byron

Hi Joshua, I also fell off my horse and hurt my wrist (polo as welll), I have similar symptoms to the above patient.

However, I can do push ups, and bicep curls and pull ups with only a slight amount of pain.

Swinging a racket, golf club or polo mallet is what really hurts. I enjoy my ball sports so its very frustrating.

Any advise would be greatly appreciated. Regards Byron


Joshua Comments:

What hurts, exactly, where?

How exactly did you land when you fell?

What are you doing for self care?

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