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Old 06-11-2010, 03:35 PM
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Default "Trigger Finger" Surgery Question

A question for those of you that have had "Trigger Finger" Surgery: Can more than one finger be "done" at one time? The index finger on my left hand is now starting to trigger... and I can feel the same sort of nodule on my palm for my other fingers as well...

I do a fair amount of bike riding (about 100 miles a week) and I wear gel padded gloves, and also have a very good set of handgrips. But, it's starting to take it's toll.

If I'm going in for surgery for the index finger, could I simply have all four fingers "done" at the same time?

Thanks in advance,
T/P
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Old 06-11-2010, 05:04 PM
00016SRGT 00016SRGT is offline
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I have something in common with you. I have had trigger finger in my right middle finger, and my left index finger for years. I also am an avid road biker. I've ridden 200 miles since last Sunday. Regarding the cycling, you might want to adjust your position to take some pressure off of your hands. You know what I am talking about--raising the bars a bit, lowering the saddle, etc. Just a suggestion.

Consult a good upper extremity surgeon about your problem. I came very close to going under the knife myself, but when the doctor handed me a 3-page disclaimer to sign, I chickened out. There are alternatives, such as cortisone injections. And, in my case, the condition has partially abated on its own. This can improve over time without treatment.

I read a thread recently--I think it was in this forum--about a guy who had this surgery, and had a terrible outcome, with a long rehab, lots of pain, and what sounded like a crippling of his hand. You must have it pretty bad to need it on four fingers, but, remember, surgery is always the last resort.
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Old 06-11-2010, 07:18 PM
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Thanks for the reply. I'm hoping it will improve some after "riding season" is over.
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Old 06-11-2010, 07:51 PM
Misifus Misifus is offline
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I guess it's a difference in doctors. My orthopedist gave me cortizone shots for the trigger finger that has occured, once each, in three of my fingers at different times. The trigger finger has not recurred, but then, I'm old.

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Old 06-11-2010, 10:51 PM
Rick Turner Rick Turner is offline
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Right hand, middle finger, locks up curled in the night about half the time. Takes a few minutes of careful unbending using my other hand in the morning to loosen it up. Wearing a splint on the finger to keep it straight at night helps. If it keeps up, I'll go for the cortisone shot first. Looking into diet, whether it's worse if I have a couple of beers at night, stuff like that. Maybe acupuncture? Stop typing on the computer for a while? Stop working? Nope, can't do that... Use it and lose it I guess is the word for us seniors.
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Old 06-12-2010, 03:07 AM
UKPhil UKPhil is offline
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Sounds like you have what is known as Vikings Disease or Dupuytren's Disease and if you search on the internet you will find lots of stuff about it.

I had two screws put in my left wrist 4 years ago and have now develepod this in the same hand. Its not to bad at the moment and I think my guitar playing may be restricting its development somewhat although I feel my little finger is being affected over the last few months.

In terms of my guitar playing it has only affected the stretch - at the moment!!

Good luck.
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Old 06-12-2010, 03:29 AM
landru64 landru64 is offline
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i don't think trigger finger is the same as dupuytren's....

my extremely brilliant hand therapist tells me that trigger finger surgeries are fairly common and straightforward. a simple mechanical problem of a node on or thickening of the tendon causing the tendon glide to be impeded.... i believe they call this flexor tendonitis.... or stenosing tenosynovitis
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Old 06-12-2010, 09:48 AM
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There is an excellent article on the subject here. BTW, you guys are scaring the heck out me.
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Old 06-12-2010, 10:52 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tarpman View Post
There is an excellent article on the subject here. BTW, you guys are scaring the heck out me.
That was a good article - thanks Ted.
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Old 06-12-2010, 04:37 PM
Papol Papol is offline
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Hi TP,

I had two on my left hand and 1 on my right. The right was done separately and was relatively quick to heal. I was playing guitar pretty well within 1 week to 3 weeks of the first one.

The 2nd time, when I had two, the surgeon and I decided to try them both at once. I'm not sure there's a "correct" answer to these things. The biggest problem with trigger finger surgery isn't the surgery (because it's easy), it's the aftermath, which consists of PT and using the PT to soften scar tissue.

Of course, if you have more fingers done, the incision is larger, so more scar tissue, so more PT, and it can eat up a fair amount of time to get back to something resembling 'normal'.

I might be the guy that was referred to as having a horrible outcome (I have no idea really), but I may have described it that way 6 months after surgery when I was still in a pretty huge amount of pain and couldn't feel my fingertips, and had a limited range of motion.

The surgery worked fine either way. My trigger fingers were healed right after surgery. That's almost the smallest part of surgery, so make sure you use a surgeon that really supports aftercare (PT/OT) and will lobby with your insurance company to get it since it winds up being the bulk of the deal especially if you're considering getting 4 fingers done.

In retrospect, I'm really happy with the outcome of my surgeries, and when you can't use those fingers at all , then surgery isn't the last resort. It's pretty much the only way forward. When you have any other option open to you, then it's the last resort but mine were bad.

I put a trigger finger section on my youtube site so someone that played guitar might get some idea what this is like for some of us. I'll link to it if I ever stop typing ;)

I can gig now, play for 5-6 hours no problems, and I'm still in PT for another 2 months. I would be really hesitant to have 4 fingers done at once based on my experience. The thing about surgeons as a generalization is that if you ask a decent surgeon about his track record with any type of surgery (in our case TF surgeries), they will say something like "I've performed 4500 of these things and the only thing anyone has ever said is thank you". The problem with that is that it's an easy surgery and of course the surgeon has never killed anyone during the surgery nor severed a tendon, but that is meaningless info.

What you'd like to know is follow-up info, like how is the 1) surgeon, 2) guitar-player, 3) sports nut, 9 months after surgery? Did they regain all their fine motor skills? Some people are pretty sedentary or didn't use many finger motor skills and they will consider their surgeries total cures whereas we might not do so unless we're playing without problems all day long--

Anyway, my best wishes to you and here's a link to where you can find a few trigger-finger related videos (day of surgery, etc).

http://www.youtube.com/user/hachamacha (see the playlists for TF)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Taylorplayer View Post
A question for those of you that have had "Trigger Finger" Surgery: Can more than one finger be "done" at one time? The index finger on my left hand is now starting to trigger... and I can feel the same sort of nodule on my palm for my other fingers as well...

I do a fair amount of bike riding (about 100 miles a week) and I wear gel padded gloves, and also have a very good set of handgrips. But, it's starting to take it's toll.

If I'm going in for surgery for the index finger, could I simply have all four fingers "done" at the same time?

Thanks in advance,
T/P
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  #11  
Old 06-12-2010, 06:46 PM
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Each situation is different so if you've got a good hand doc and ot/pt they should be able to get you on the right track. For me ot/pt did the trick but a cortizone shot was the next step before we talked surgery. Getting at it early helped me. Good luck.
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