Wrist Injuries and Pain

Much like your ankles, your wrists and hands are intricately composed of tiny bones, tendons, and ligaments. When you experience wrist pain due to a wrist injury or limited movement and discomfort due to normal wear and tear over the years, you’ll be exposed to a variety of treatment methods. Below you’ll find a list of common wrist injuries and pain descriptions where some orthopedic surgeons and physicians are utilizing regenerative medicine to assist in the healing process. 

Hand Arthritis

Arthritis can occur in many areas of the hand and wrist and can have more than one cause. Pain, swelling, warmth are common symptoms. Over time, if arthritis is not treated, the bones that make up the joint can lose their normal shape. This causes more pain and further limits motion.

Treatment options for arthritis of the hand and wrist include medication, splinting, injections, and surgery. More recently, some physicians are using the regenerative power of adult stem cells to treat patients with arthritis.

Instability

Carpal instability occurs when the small bones in the wrist move out of position and compromise joint functioning as a result of wear and tear, bone fractures, or arthritis. Carpal instability causes ongoing pain and the loss of wrist functioning. You may experience a snapping or hear a clicking noise when you move your hand from side to side. Your hand and wrist may feel weak and stiff. You may be unable to use them for activities. Over time, your hand may develop arthritis.

Treatment is specific to the type of carpal instability experienced. Splinting will treat some types of carpal instability but many types of carpal instability require surgery. Arthroscopic surgery is commonly used to treat carpal instability. Regenerative medicine may be used in conjunction with surgery or alone to address patient pain and inflammation from carpal instability.

TFCC Tear (Triangular Fibrocartilage Complex tear)

A TFCC injury is a tear of tissue on the side of your wrist opposite your thumb. The tendons and ligaments that make up the TFCC allow the wrist to bend, straighten, twist, and move side-to-side. Most TFCC injuries are caused by specific movements, like fall onto an outstretched hand, a direct blow to the side of the wrist or hand, swinging a bat or a racquet, or a violent twist of the wrist.

Symptoms may include pain on the little-finger side of your wrist or a clicking sound or feeling when you move your wrist. Treatment depends on how bad the tear is and can include splinting, steroid injections, surgery, and in some practices, physicians are using adult stem cells from the patient’s own body to help repair and heal the TFCC tear.

Carpal Tunnel Syndrome

Carpal tunnel syndrome is a hand and arm condition that causes numbness, tingling and other symptoms. Carpal tunnel syndrome is caused by a pinched nerve in your wrist. Common carpal tunnel syndrome symptoms include tingling and numbness in your fingers and hand and hand weakness.

Beyond rest and ice packs, treatment for carpel tunnel syndrome can include splinting, medications and for severe cases, surgery. Because surgery can be expensive and isn’t guaranteed to correct carpal tunnel syndrome, some patients are seeking out adult stem therapy to address inflammation that might be pinching the nerve, thereby relieving the symptoms of carpal tunnel syndrome.

Trigger Finger

Trigger finger is a condition that affects the tendons in your fingers or thumb. When you try to straighten your finger, it will lock or catch before popping out straight. Symptoms, like a tender lump in your palm, swelling, catching or popping of your joints, or pain when bending or straightening, may occur randomly, or after a period of heavy hand activity. Symptoms tend to be worse after periods of inactivity. In severe cases, the tendon may break free, feeling much like a joint dislocation.

Treatment of trigger finger includes rest, over-the-counter medications, steroid injections, and in some cases, surgery. As an alternative, many patients are seeking regenerative therapies as a treatment for pain and inflammation.