De Quervain’s tenosynovitis is a type of tendonitis that involves the tendons on the thumb side of the wrist. This condition can be caused by an injury, but most often is seen with repetitive activities such as unscrewing jar lids, grasping tools and frequently picking up children under the arms. The symptoms are pain and swelling at the thumb side or radial side of the wrist. Pain is felt mainly while gripping or pinching with simultaneous twisting of the wrist. Sometimes with simple flexion and extension of the thumb, a clicking sensation can be felt and is associated with pain. When the condition is diagnosed, and especially when it is mild or early, conservative treatment consisting of anti-inflammatory medications and use of a thumb splint may result in resolution. Unresolved De Quervain’s tenosynovitis may in those cases then be treated surgically by releasing or opening up the tendon sheath. Recurrence is very unusual.
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