This is a hereditary condition (that is thought to be passed down from the Vikings.) There may be noticeable thickening of the palmar tissue in the hand and bands of tissue can cause the finger and thumb to become bent. An assessment will be needed by a specialist hand consultant who may recommend surgery to remove the fibrous bands. Physiotherapy will be required using splintage, ultrasound and exercise to aid recovery of normal functional hand movement.
Thumb UCL Sprain (Thumb Ulnar Collateral Ligament Sprain)
Usually the thumb will have had a traumatic incident that has forced it outwards. It is often associated with skiing, especially on dry slopes when the thumb gets caught in the netting. These are painful injuries that can be slow to recover. Specialised medical opinion is best sought early. Splintage and specific exercise programmes are often required. Occasionally surgery may be necessary to repair the ligament.
Trigger Finger / Thumb
This condition can appear spontaneously. A catching/ locking will be felt when bending the finger or thumb and there will be pain on straightening. These problems can be helped by injection into the area to stop the tendon catching as it runs through its sheath. Physiotherapy using ultrasound and massage can aid recovery.
This injury is usually caused by a forceful bend on the tip of a finger or thumb. The tip of the digit will droop and will not fully straighten. There may also be pain and swelling in the area. It is important to seek a medical opinion as soon as possible and then splintage can be used for six to eight weeks to support the finger. During this time physiotherapy can be used to monitor skin condition, progress and splint requirements.
Tendon Injuries / Fractures / Nerve Injuries
Any of these injuries can be serious and will need specialised medical attention as soon as possible. Following appropriate surgical intervention, physiotherapy is necessary to regain normal hand movement and prevent long term deformities developing. Treatment will often involve specialised splintage and procedures.