Wrist tenosynovitis ... where to from here??

by C

I suffered an injury to my right wrist while cleaning (scrubbing the floor with a brush), i slipped and banged my wrist against the floor. I had a lot of work to do, so although it was feeling achy and sore i kept going. I rested it the next 2 days before returning to work but by then it was so painful i couldn't move it.

I saw my GP who told me rest, come back in a week and I got a wrist splint in the meantime.

A week later my left wrist began experiencing the same pain, so I quickly started to ice it and strapped it up with a bandage.

I have seen a hand surgeon who gave me a cortisone injection and was referred to hand therapy where i received massage and was taught stretches to improve the movement.

Cortisone injection helped, over time pain subsided and movement improved. I had 8 weeks off work in total and returned to work on a vocational rehabilitation programme. During my time off I was told to do lots of cardiovascular exercise to release endorphins/serotonin and started to do light wrist weight exercises as well as stretches.

I began experiencing a lot of pain that travelled to different areas of my hands/arms and the sensation changed from aching, to stabbing, to burning to cramping etc.

I was told this was nerve related and probably exacerbated by stress...so rest, exercise, stretch, relax.

Since returning to work I have experienced increasing pain, in both wrists, which moves around and changes in sensation. From an awful blunt stabbing to an itching burning to a dull ache...I work in a hospital and am required to transfer people across bed and position their bodies, lift crates up to 15kg and open a lot of packets as well as moving equipment such as beds and machinery.

I have started seeing a neuro muscular therapist who has suggested that my pain is related to the muscle tightness irritating the nerves in my hands in response to the injury and that an icing like the one you have suggested would be very beneficial...

My questions are :

1.) Does my workload affect my pain/injury?

2.) Do I need to take special precautions in the future to prevent re-injury (I was diagnosed with FCR tenosynovitis and had 1 cortisone injection)?

3.) I do some computer work as part of my job, I find this particularly irritating to my wrists, why is this??

4.) Does
emotional/mental stress impact on the pain dynamic or could there be any other cause for the ongoing pain?

Thank you :-)


Joshua Answers:

Hi C.

Wait...what injury? Tight muscles are compressing a nerve, and that's caused by 'the injury'? That's a mighty big professional assumption that there's any injury.

Also....after 8 weeks of rest they said it was stress related and thus you need more rest?


Rest never has and never will help nor fix a Wrist Tendonitis problem, nor any other tendonitis related issue.

Wrist splints and braces won't either.

So, to answer your questions:

1. Technically at the moment, yes, your workload is irritating your Pain Causing Dynamic.

2. You're assuming that you're injured. Tenosynovitis is not an injury. It's an irritation.

Should you take special precautions? Yes, you should fix the problem so that your forearms are a functional ecology again. Should you try to prevent re-injury? I assert that that's thinking about it in a way that isn't doing you any favors.

3. There's a few reasons why it can be/is irritating to you.
A. It irritates your current chronic/acute Process of Inflammation .
B. Perhaps your resting your wrists heavily on the desk.
C. You're already nutrionally deficient, so your body can't operate optimally. For instance, see: Magnesium for Tendonitis

4. If you're a Type A personality, you have high magnesium requirements. Not enough magnesium causes, among other things, pain (and anxiety symptoms, inability to deal with stress, etc)

Emotional/mental stress is the same as physical stress. If you aren't full of necessary nutrients, your body, long story short, starts to hurt.

It's not ALL about nutrition, but nutrition is a key player.

So. First things first.

Lots of magnesium in, and learn How To Reduce Inflammation.

Let me know what happens.

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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