Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Thumbs Down For This One

It figures that Yours Truly would be diagnosed with something called Trigger Finger.

Or, in my case, Trigger Thumb.

About 10 days ago I started to have this very uncomfortable situation in which every time I bent my left thumb, or then straightened it, there was a popping sensation. It's worse in the morning, gets better, then gets bad again at night.

Here's the definition by Wikipedia: "Trigger finger, trigger thumb, or trigger digit, is a common disorder of later adulthood characterized by catching, snapping or locking of the involved finger flexor tendon, associated with dysfunction and pain.[1] A disparity in size between the flexor tendon and the surrounding retinacular pulley system, most commonly at the level of the first annular (A1) pulley, results in difficulty flexing or extending the finger and the “triggering” phenomenon.[1] The label of trigger finger is used because when the finger unlocks, it pops back suddenly, as if releasing a trigger on a gun."

Got that? The simple explanation is that a tendon nodule in my thumb has become inflamed and then every time I try to bend my thumb, the nodule "catches" on the sheath. Ouch.

I can imagine all of you squirming in your chairs now. Or maybe some of you have experienced this. Note that it says "later adulthood." Double Ouch.

Causes are unknown, but apparently there is plenty of anectodal evidence showing that manual repetitive stressful manual motion as a cause. Which doesn't surprise me at all. I know that some of you were suggesting it was from texting, but I rarely text. I do know that I'm on the computer a good 8 hours of the day. At least it's not arthiritis, which I feared.

All this is the reason why I'm not writing much lately. I'll be taking it easy until this eases up, and taking anti-inflammatory meds.

Dont' forget the contest is coming up again, Entry #2, sometime tomorrow.

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9 comments:

Walker Martin said...

I guess there is some sort of ironic justice after all! The grandaughter of Paul Powers, who wrote hundreds of stories for WILD WEST WEEKLY, comes down with "trigger finger".

Hope you get well soon.

Deka Black said...

OUCH! Take care, laurie!

Barry Traylor said...

All joking aside I sure do hope you heal up soon.
It does make me think of how my son is going to be later on as he has been a gamer for at least 20 years. I'm pretty sure the thumbs are used a lot.
"Later adulthood" now that's just plain mean. A bit like the low blow my mother gave me when I hit 35 and she said something like this "gee Barry your're middleaged now". Mom was a nice lady, but she could slip a needle in with the best of them.

Charles Gramlich said...

Most likely due to computer use. I imagine it's not uncommon among us "aging" computer users. I've been lucky so far. Hope it gets to feeling better soon.

Alfred Jan said...

Laurie, do not rule out a steroid injection if presented as an option by your physician. It worked for me when I had a similar problem. Good luck on a speedy recovery!

Rick said...

Best wishes and I hope it eases up soon, Trigger.

Richard R. said...

What they all said, Laurie. Get well soon! My newest theory is that you've been sticking your thumb in the wrong hole on the bowling ball... I know, I know, you probably don't bowl. Does anyone these days?

Cap'n Bob said...

Laurie to Doctor: "It hurts when I do this" (flexes thumb).

Doctor: "Don't do it."

I got a million of 'em--all just as lame. But seriously, I hope the meds work and you're back at it again real soon.

Ron Scheer said...

Just your thumb. No worries. I blew out a whole shoulder. And I blame computering. Taking anti-inflammatories and applying ice packs helped.

Don't worry about "late adulthood" either. You've still got later and even-later adulthood. And you know what they say about death...it's the new 80.