Hand Therapy Week
June 1-5, 2015
Wrist Pain Wednesday!!
You have 8 bones in each wrist. There are very small ligaments that connect each wrist bone. There are also ligaments that connect the wrist bones to the radius bone in your forearm. The ligaments on the palm-side of the wrist are thick and strong. The ligaments on the back of the wrist are thinner and are more likely to be injured. Instability in those ligaments may develop from any type of injury- blunt trauma, repetitive stress, excessive force or hyperextension of the wrist when you fall. Ligaments heal slowly as they have very few blood vessels which assist with repair and healing.
Wrist Sprain Treatment
Many times, a sprained wrist ligament can be treated with a custom splint for 6-8 weeks to allow the ligament to heal. Once the ligament is stable, stretching and strengthening exercises may begin. Many times, surgery is required to correct the ligament. And therapy is recommended after surgery for strengthening to regain function.
1. Scaphoid bone-The most commonly fractured wrist bone is the Scaphoid bone. It usually happens when you fall on an outstretched arm. Scaphoid bones are also frequently fractured during sporting events. You will experience pain, swelling and tenderness at the base of your thumb. Treatment may include a thumb spica splint to immobilize the wrist and the base of the thumb. The fingers and the top joint of the thumb should be free to prevent stiffness from developing in those joints.
2. Radius and Ulna fractures- Many people fracture the ends of their forearm bones, the radius and the ulna. Because these bones connect with the wrist bones, wrist motion is affected. These fractures can be splinted for support or they may require surgery to stabilize the fractured area. Wrist fractures can lead to a surprising number of difficulties- swelling in the back of the hand, pain, stiffness in the elbow, forearm and fingers. Your therapist will work with you over the next 2 months to increase motion and strength in the wrist and hand.
Our Certified Hand Therapist, Michele Jarzynka, can assist you with these wrist problems and any other problems with your arm or hand. Please contact us if you have questions regarding your needs.