De Quervain's Syndrome

30 Jul 2019
Health Articles
Event

De what? Some says it sounded like a genetic disorder. De Quervain’s Syndrome is also known as De Quervain’s Tenosynovitis. What if we say “texting thumbs”, “gamer’s thumb”, or “mother’s thumb”? Would you relate better of what it is?
 
 De Quervain syndrome is inflammation of two tendons that control movement of the thumb and their tendon sheath. The symptoms are common among people who make repeated movement with their thumbs frequently, such as those do a lot of texting on their smart phones, or mothers who do a lot of house chores to take care of their children.


Symptoms

Inflammation of the tendons and tendon sheath could cause pain at the base of the thumb, especially when you move your thumb.

You may also observe swelling of the base of your thumb due to inflammation reaction that increase the blood flow to the inflamed area.

When you try to grasp or pinch into something, you may face difficulty moving your thumb. It feels like your thumb has suddenly become weak.

Awkward sensation of sticking of your thumb when you move it around. It feels like something is resisting the thumb from moving smooth.

The pain at the base of your thumb could also radiate down to your thumb if the symptom remains untreated.


Causes
 
While the direct cause of De Quervain’s Syndrome remains unclear, there are several common factors that lead to this syndrome. 
 
Repetitive strains to the tendon is among the most popular cause for De Quervain’s syndrome to day. For example, we have a patient who is a sales person. He is required to reply messages on the smartphone. He texted day and night without proper rest and one day he realized weakness and pain at the base of his thumb. He came to Zen Chiropractic and we quickly identified his De Quervain’s Syndrome from diagnosis and restored his range of motion. 
 
Those who have inflammatory arthritis such as rheumatoid arthritis are also on the high-risk group. The inflammatory-prone environment promotes the inflammation around the extensor policis brevis and the tendon sheath upon irritation.


Prevention
 
As most of the De Quervain’s Syndrome is due to repetitive strain injuries, the most effective way to prevent the condition is to make a conscious change of our daily activities that involve the using of our thumb. Anything that requires strong, repetitive grasping, pinching, pressing, movement should be done with resting intervals. 
 
 Take a break from playing video games from time to time, be it gaming from console or gaming using your phone. Some breastfeeding mothers tend to carry their babies for long period many times a day, and put a lot of stress on their wrist and thumb. If your have early symptoms of De Quervain’s Syndrome, it’s good to prepare your milk in a bottle and let your babies drink it in their cradle so your hand get to rest. 
 
 Most importantly, you must visit your chiropractor to get your De Quervain’s Syndrome treated as soon as possible. Avoid aggravate the condition further by adding more strain to it. If your tendon is severely damaged, it could cause permanent lost of strength and range of motion.