Did you know the thumb joint is the most mobile in the hand? It can move up and down, in and out, and rotate; our thumbs move hundreds of times daily. When we use a hammer or hold a glass, the thumb joint helps grip the object and stabilize the other fingers while writing or counting money.

Because our thumbs are used so much, the joint can deteriorate over time, causing arthritis in some individuals. Osteoarthritis can cause the smooth cartilage to become rough, resulting in pain, swelling, limited motion, and a grinding or popping sensation.

After a physician diagnoses arthritis and joint deterioration, non-surgical treatments will be recommended, including pain relief through medications, cortisone injections, and rest through splinting. Unfortunately, arthritis is a degenerative disease that progresses in time for some individuals. After non-surgical methods are exhausted, a joint reconstructive surgery called Arthroplasty is recommended.

Arthroplasty can be done as an outpatient procedure or require an overnight stay. There are several different ways surgeons can replace the thumb joint. Once the surgery is complete, a splint is applied to the thumb to promote healing and rest. Discomfort and swelling are normal; pain medication will be prescribed to alleviate them.

It generally takes roughly six weeks for patients to recover from Arthroplasty completely. After immobilization is deemed sufficient by the surgeon, physical therapy is recommended.

Risks associated with thumb joint replacement surgery include tendon injury, vascular injury, and possible infection, though extremely rare.

Do you have arthritis in your thumb? Contact the experts at MI Hand & Wrist to experience relief today!

Michigan Hand & Wrist was founded in 2001 with the mission to provide the highest-quality care for patients seeking surgical or non-surgical hand or upper extremity relief. Our goal is to exhaust all non-operative measures before discussing or moving on to surgical interventions. We offer on-site physical therapy from therapists committed to improving your quality of life. Our individualized treatments are modern, progressive, and exceptional. Contact us today at www.michiganhandandwrist.com or call 248-596-0412.

Written by the digital marketing staff at Creative Programs & Systems: www.cpsmi.com.

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