Trigger finger surgery may be recommended by your doctor
Trigger finger surgery may be recommended if non-surgical forms of treatment do not relieve the symptoms. .
This type of surgery is performed as an outpatient, usually with simple local anesthesia.
The following trigger finger surgery video shows a member of the American Society for Surgery of the Hand (www.assh.org), taking you through actual surgery. The procedure is described as it is being performed and, provides insight into the anatomy and causation of trigger finger.
The surgeon will ask the patient to lie down on a table on their back, with their hand stretch down at their side. The hand is properly cleaned and draped with sterile covers.
The doctor makes an incision, usually no more than 1-cm long, at the bottom or base of the finger. Separating the skin, the doctor views the tendon sheath and pulleys that enable bending and extension of the affected finger. The doctor identifies the proper pulley in the affected finger and incises or slices through it, thereby relieving the construction and giving the tendon more freedom of movement. The patient is usually asked to perform several movements with a finger to ensure proper range of motion, flexion and extension potential. Two to three stitches is usually all that are needed to close the incision, which may be absorbed or removed within 10 days to two weeks.
The goal of trigger finger surgery is to open the pulley at the base of the finger so that the tendon can glide more freely. Active motion of the finger generally begins immediately after surgery and, normal use of the hand can usually be resumed once comfort permits. Some patients may feel tenderness, discomfort, and swelling about the area of their surgery longer than others. Occasionally, hand therapy is required after trigger finger surgery to regain better use.
Trigger finger surgery provides permanent relief from locking and triggering in the great majority of patients.
Surgical repair of trigger finger involves releasing the A1 pulley by cutting the fibers with a needle through the skin or by making an incision with a scalpel.
Trigger finger pain after trigger finger surgery:
Post-operative pain is a normal side effect of any surgical procedure but the pain usually subsides in a few days after surgery. Some patients benefit by elevating the hand after surgery to reduce the pain and swelling, according to the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons.
Residual clicking or triggering can occur if there is an incomplete release of the A1 pulley, previous scar tissue, or if post-operative scarring or adhesions form causes residual clicking.
Surgeons check the function of the finger intraoperatively to ensure an adequate release of the A1 pulley and a resolution of the symptoms. Adhesions or scarring forms if patients do not begin early range of motion exercises of the finger. This would decrease the risk of adhesions able to cause residual clicking or triggering.
Trigger finger surgery Infection:
Infection is a risk of any surgery. The risk of infection from trigger finger surgery is very low, but remains a risk.. It is advised to keep the surgical site clean and, to not remove the operative dressing until the followup appointment. The hand surgeon performing the procedure will discuss specifics in regards to how to care for the wound.
Trigger finger surgery has a high success rate:
Many patients can actually move their hands and fingers right after the surgery. However, trigger finger surgery can’t guarantee 100% cure. Still, compared to non-surgical treatments, trigger finger surgery offers the best results.
But although that’s the case, surgery must be carefully considered as an option. A consultation with a doctor must take place before deciding to have a surgery. In some other cases, non-surgical treatments are enough to address trigger finger. But when the symptoms have become too disruptive and severe, trigger finger surgery is called for.
Always verify the training, education and certification of any surgeon, and make sure he or she belongs to a reputable Orthopedic or Plastic Surgery organization or association before undertaking trigger finger surgery.
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