After putting up with a very painful trigger finger (my left ring finger) for months now, I'm ready to go back to the doctor and tell him to do the surgery. I tried one injection of cortisone, but the effects only lasted about a month. Rather than waste more money on another one or two injections that probably won't last either, I'd rather get a permanent solution by having the surgery.
What I'd like to know from those of you who have had this surgery is how long did it take before you could use the hand that was operated on. I asked this doctor's nurse, and she said it could be a few weeks. If it takes that long to be able to use your hand, I'm not sure if I can go ahead and have the surgery done. My problem is that my right wrist can get rather painful if I use it too much. As long as I can use both hands (although I can only use the thumb and the first two fingers of my left hand to do anyting), my right wrist doesn't bother me. But if I would have to do EVERYTHING exclusively with the right hand because of the surgery on the left, the right would get very, very painful, and then I don't know what I'd do. Grow a third hand? Would love to know others' recovery times. Thanks!
I had surgery for a trigger finger on my right thumb last August. And I'm right handed. And my husband went on a trip two days later. I could do just about everything with my right hand except open bottles and jars. I had a bandage on my hand, your's may only be on your ring finger and then across the palm of your hand. My doctor gave me a plastic glove with really long plastic that went up my whole arm. I used this when I showered because I couldn't get my hand wet.
It was a little painful that night but other than that it was fine. It heals pretty fast. I saw the doctor a week later and was shown an exercise to do to strengthen it. Then I saw the doctor at 6 weeks. Everything was fine.
I am so glad I had it done. I waited too long to have the surgery. Didn't need any occupational therapy either.
I had trigger finger surgery and a cyst removed from the nail bed, trigger finger and cyst was left hand, ring finger. The most horrible part of this surgery was the injection of needles directly into the palm of hand with no numbing. I would not go through this again with out numbing of the area or being put under.
The cyst removal was successful and no scaring. The trigger finger surgery left me with major scar tissue in the palm of the hand. The surgeon told me to take the bandage off the day after surgery and go about as if everything was normal. The problem with that was that the incision kept opening up, and even 2 stitches broke. Other people I have talked with were told to keep it bandaged until healed.
Choose surgeon carefully and good luck. Even with scar tissue it is wonderful not to have the finger lock up.
Thanks for responding kismet and Orphanannie1. Orphanannie1--I can't believe your surgeon told you to take the bandage off the next day. Wow! I would have to keep the incision covered and protected for a while to avoid infection, which I'm extremely prone to developing because of my diabetes.
Thanks for the advice about having the surgeon numb your hand before sticking the needles in. You would think that numbing would be an automatic thing to do. I want as little pain as possible since I have to stay awake for the surgery. (With the diabetes, it's just too hard to be put to sleep. You're always instructed to not eat after midnight, and with the diabetes, there would be a possibility that I might have to eat if my blood sugar got too low.) I don't want surgery, but I'm so tired of the pain and not being able to use my hand in a normal manner. I hope my recovery goes as well as yours did, kismet. Thanks both of you.
I forgot to say that the doctor told me to hold my hand up by my heart for at least 3 days. I don't know if it was to stop swelling or for something else. Anyway that was hard since we don't usually do that. I just put a sling on that held my arm up.
Had the bandage on for a week and then had strips put on that came off in a day or two.
I was sedated for the procedure. The doctor wouldn't do it without anesthesia. He said if he got in there and had to go too deep that anesthesia would be required anyway. It was a very fast and short surgery.
It's inevitable that you will have the surgery so just go for it. If you have never been to this doctor before ask your family physician for a referral to a good doctor or ask friends.
I went to a hand surgeon years ago for a trigger finger in my ring finger. Had an ultrasound cause there was a lump at the bottom of the finger. There was a cyst. The doctor said I needed surgery. I asked what the percentage rate that the cyst would grow back was. He said maybe 80%. I told him no thanks. Didn't like this doctor anyway.
Went to the doctor that did my thumb and he gave me a shot of cortisone. Apparently the cyst disappeared since there is no sign of it now. I always trust my gut feeling when seeing a doctor. If I don't like him I find another.
Thanks kismet for the additional info and advice. I still haven't decided what to do. If my other hand didn't hurt also, I wouldn't hesitate at all to have the surgery. As things stand, though, I just don't know if I could manage to do things with that hand while my other hand is healing from the surgery. I'll have to make a decision soon. Thanks again for your help.