Doctor Q&A: Pain in my thumb

Q: I am right handed and have been getting pain right in the joint, especially when I do certain things. I haven’t hurt it so don’t know what is could be?’

A: This sounds like de Quervain’s tenosynovitis, irritation of the thumb tendon, and its covering.

It can happen if you are doing an activity with repetitive movements like typing or using a mouse. Pain over your wrist at the base of your thumb gets worse after using it, especially when you straighten it.

You can help by resting the thumb as much as you can, using an ice-pack and anti-inflammatories like ibuprofen.

See your GP to confirm what it is and ask whether you can be offered a steroid injection or physiotherapy if all else fails.

Dr Radha Modgil

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