Signs, causes, and treatments for tendonitis of the wrist


Tendonitis of the wrist, also called tenosynovitis, is a common condition characterized by irritation and inflammation of the tendons around the wrist joint. Crowd tendon they surround the wrist joint. Tendonitis of the wrist usually affects one of the tendons, but may also include two or more.

Often tendonitis of the wrist it occurs in places where the tendons intersect or pass over the bony bulge. These are possible places of irritation that can cause discomfort when moving in the wrist joint.

Illustration By Joshua Song. © Get medication information, 2018. 

Anatomy of the tendons of the wrist

Tendons are structures that connect muscle to bone, and tendons in the wrist connect the muscles of the forearm to the bones of the hand and fingers. The tendons of the wrist slide over the smooth membranes, passing through the wrist joint.

This tendon sheaths it allows the tendons to slide smoothly as the wrist flexes back and forth with a low coefficient of friction. The tendon sheaths contain a fluid inside the sheath called synovial fluid, and when this area becomes inflamed, the condition is called tenosynovitis.

The tendons surrounding the wrist are divided into two groups: the tendons on the back of the wrist (extenders) and the tendons on the front of the wrist (flexors).

Symptoms of Wrist tendonitis

The most common and persistent complaint of patients diagnosed with tendonitis of the wrist is pain in the wrist. Other symptoms of wrist tendonitis include:

  • Swelling around the wrist
  • Heat and redness of the tendons
  • Creaking sensationcrackling) by moving tendons


Any tendon can become irritated and cause pain symptoms. but tendinitis is much more likely to occur in a few specific tendons as a result of the anatomy and specific actions that humans perform.

Problems that can occur with the tendons of the wrist may vary depending on the specific condition. Some conditions are characterized more by inflammation, while others are characterized more by chronic tendon damage (tendonosis).

Sometimes, systemic diseases such as gout or pseudopodagra may be involved, and in other situations, autoimmune diseases, including rheumatoid arthritis, may contribute to the onset of symptoms.


The diagnosis of tendinitis of the wrist is made by looking for the characteristic signs of this condition. In addition, depending on the inflamed tendon, a health care professional may perform tests that stretch specific tendons that cause anxiety to determine the exact source of inflammation.

For example, one type of tendonitis of the wrist is called tenosinovite Dekerven. It is an inflammation of the tendon at the base of the thumb. Often observed in young mothers, tenosinovite Dekerven is diagnosed with a special test called the “Finkelstein test,” where the patient squeezes his fist and pulls the wrist away from the thumb. The pain of this maneuver is the diagnosis of this type of tendonitis of the wrist.

No special studies are usually required, but an X-ray may be helpful in evaluating other possible causes of wrist pain. X-rays can be especially helpful in evaluating arthritis or fractures. Most people with tendonitis of the wrist will have normal X-rays.

Other tests, such as ultrasound and MRI, may show tendinitis more accurately, as these tests will show a buildup of fluid around the injured tendon. While these tests are generally not necessary, if confusion arises about the possible cause of the pain, they may be helpful in further evaluating the problem.


Once tendinitis is diagnosed, a treatment plan can be developed. Not everyone who suffers from wrist tendonitis will be treated the same way, and some treatments may be more helpful for a particular type of tendonitis than others.

However, most treatments start with a few simple steps to control inflammation and tendon healing, and move on to more invasive steps only if these treatments do not help relieve the symptoms of the disease:

  • Immobilization: Putting the wrist in a splint or cast is usually the first stage of treatment. Tendonitis of the wrist occurs due to repetitive irritation of the tendon and its sheath. By resting the tendon, the inflammation should decrease.
  • Apply ice to the wound: It may also be helpful to periodically apply an ice pack to the inflamed area. Tendonitis icing on the wrist can help cool inflammation and stimulate blood flow to the tendonitis area.
  • Anti-inflammatory drugs: Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs will help control pain symptoms, but most importantly, they help treat tendonitis of the wrist to reduce inflammation and swelling of the soft tissues. These healing medications will reduce the inflammatory response that is the cause of the pain.
  • Hand therapy: Hand therapy is a specialized type of therapy that focuses on the complex function of the hand and wrist, as well as the many tendons and ligaments that surround and support the joint. Manual therapists use a variety of techniques, from stretching and strengthening before electrical stimulation and ultrasound. In addition, the manual therapist often makes special splints and supports to help control wrist movements.
  • Cortisone injection: Cortisone is a more potent anti-inflammatory that is given by injection directly into the focus of inflammation. Cortisone injections are safe, but they can weaken tendons over time if too many injections are given.
  • Surgery: Surgery is only done if these other treatments have not solved the problem. If this is the case, the tight tendon sheath area that causes painful and difficult tendon movements may be released. Inflammatory tissue can also be removed to create more space for the tendon to move freely.

Relapse Prevention

There are a number of steps you can take to prevent outbreaks of tendonitis of the wrist. The most important step you can take is to change any specific activity that seems to worsen your condition. This may mean adjusting the lifting method or adjusting the grip.

Changing the position of your hands when performing activities can ensure that no tendons take on too much burden. Other steps include:

  • Wearing a splint during activities that irritate your tendonitis can be beneficial, but it can also be onerous. Of course, a simple supportive bandage or brace can be an easy way to avoid symptoms.
  • Be careful when taking medication before exercising, as it can sometimes hide symptoms when you are best evaluated when you overdo some activity.
  • Gentle stretching and warming up before activity can ensure the tendons are ready, and an ice pack afterwards can calm any inflammation.

If you can’t control your symptoms, it may be time to see your health care provider.

A Few Words From Get Meds Info

Tendonitis of the wrist is a common condition that almost everyone will experience at some point in their life. Following a few simple steps in the early stages of the disease can help prevent worsening symptoms and your disability.

If you have problems with tendonitis of the wrist, working with a hand therapy specialist to develop a recurring problem prevention program can help you continue to do what you need to work or enjoy relaxation.

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