Los Angeles Hand Surgeon

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Animal and Human Bites
Arthritis at Base of Thumb
Brachial Plexus Injury
Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
Congenital Hand Differences
Cubital Tunnel Syndrome
De Quervain's Tendonitis
Dupuytren's Disease
Extensor Tendon Injuries
Fireworks Accident
Flexor Tendon Injuries
Ganglion Cysts
Hand Fractures
Hand Infections
Kienböck's Disease
Nail Bed Injuries
Nerve Injuries of the Hand
Osteoarthritis of the Hand
Prosthetics and Amputation
Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy
Rheumatoid Arthritis
Scaphoid Fractures
Scaphoid Non-Union
Tendon Transfer Surgery
Tennis Elbow
Thumb Sprains
Trigger Finger
Vascular Disorders
Wrist Arthroscopy
Wrist Fractures
Wrist Sprains

Diagnosis Model
Hand Diagnosis Model


Call our offices at:
(310) 274-3481
(800) 964-0404

Beverly Hills
9301 Wilshire Boulevard
Suite 406A
Beverly Hills, California 90210

We accept most types of insurance providers and specialize in the treatment of workers' compensation injuries to the hand and upper extremity.

Trigger Finger

Causes of Trigger Finger
Symptoms of the Condition
Treatment & Recovery

"Trigger finger" has nothing to do with firearms, but is the common name for stenosing tenosynovitis, a condition affecting the tendons and pulleys in the hand that are used to bend the fingers.

Trigger Finger

Inside the hand, tendons act like ropes that connect the muscles in the forearm with the bones of the fingers and thumb. The tendons in the finger run through a tunnel made up of a series of rings or pulleys, which holds the tendons close to the bone. To ease the tendon's movement, the tunnel has a slippery lining.

If the pulley where the finger joins the hand thickens and tightens around the tendon so it can't move freely, trigger finger or trigger thumb results. The tendon can sometimes grow a knot or nodule, or its lining can swell, and because it no longer glides easily through the pulley, it can produce pain or a popping sensation when the digit is moved.

Such a triggering sensation isn't like any other feeling. The tendon will worsen over time in a vicious cycle of swelling, inflammation, and triggering. Whenever it catches, it swells and inflames more extensively. If left untreated, the finger or thumb can become stiff and difficult to move or bend.

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Causes of Trigger Finger
The causes of trigger finger are not well known, but there appears to be some relationship to diabetes, gout, or rheumatoid arthritis. Trigger finger may present itself if the palm or the base of the finger or thumb receives a traumatic event, but most cases have no known cause.

Trigger Finger Causes

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Symptoms of the Condition
The first symptom may be a feeling of discomfort or tenderness where the finger or thumb meets the palm, sometimes with a small bump or nodule. As the condition develops and the finger or thumb starts to lock or trigger, it is often associated with the middle finger knuckle or the one closest to the tip of the thumb.

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Treatment and Recovery
Your hand surgeon will effectively eliminate the catching or locking that restricts movement of the finger or thumb so that it can move freely once again. To accomplish this, any swelling in the tendon or tunnel must be reduced so that the tendon can move freely through the tunnel.

Trigger Finger Condition
Trigger Finger Locking

A splint may be used to restrict movement, or anti-inflammatory medications may be prescribed. To further reduce the swelling, some activities may have to be changed. Often, injecting steroids into the area relieves the condition.

If none of these conservative treatments are successful, one of our hand surgeons may recommend surgery, which can be performed with local anesthesia on an outpatient basis. Your hand surgeon will try to open up the pulley where the tendon is sticking, located where the thumb or finger meets the palm. Immediately following the procedure, the finger or thumb will once again be used actively. Once it's comfortable to do so, normal use of the hand can return.

Following surgery, some patients may experience longer periods of swelling, discomfort, and tenderness. Hand therapy might be suggested as a way to get better use of the hand.

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We serve the following cities within Los Angeles, which are in close proximity to our offices:
Agoura Hills, Brentwood, Canoga Park, Century City, Chatsworth, Culver City, Glendale, Granada Hills, Hollywood, Los Angeles, Marina Del Rey, North Hollywood, Northridge, Rancho Park, Reseda, Santa Monica, Sherman Oaks, Studio City, Tarzana, Valencia, Van Nuys, West Hills, West Hollywood, West L.A., Winnetka, Woodland Hills