Tendon and Nerve Disorders in the Hand


If a tendon or nerve disorder harms your hands, the loss of function or feeling can be disruptive and even keep you from performing simple tasks. But with prompt diagnosis and proper treatment, many of these disorders can be overcome.

Understanding Hand Tendon and Nerve Disorders

Your hands contain dozens of bones, muscles, nerves and connective tissues called ligaments and tendons. Together these structures have a big job – they help your hands move, touch, feel and pick things up. But because they are protected by only a thin layer of skin, they are also vulnerable to damage.

Your tendons are strong cords of tissue that connect your bones to muscles. When your muscles contract, the tendons pull on your bones to create movement. If injury or disease damages the tendons in your hands, you may not be able to straighten or bend your fingers.

Nerves carry signals from your brain to every part of your body, including your hands and fingers. If the nerves in your hands are compressed or damaged, you may lose feeling or muscle control.

Hand Conditions Treated

Whether you cut your hand in a workplace accident or have a painful nerve disorder, you can count on Mercy for timely and expert care. Our orthopedic specialists treat tendon and nerve problems in the hands and fingers, including:

  • Flexor tendon injuries, which often result from deep cuts or wounds.
  • Extensor tendon injuries such as mallet finger (also known as baseball finger).
  • Nerve damage caused by cuts, crush injuries or animal bites.
  • Nerve entrapment disorders including carpal tunnel syndrome.
  • Medical conditions that inflame or irritate the tendons. These include trigger finger, De Quervain's tendinosis and tendonitis.

Treatment for Hand Nerve and Tendon Disorders

Your treatment plan will depend on several factors including the type and severity of your disorder. It may include:

  • Medicine to reduce pain and inflammation.
  • Steroid shots (cortisone injections) to reduce inflammation.
  • Orthopedic rehabilitation to rebuild strength and function in your hand and fingers.
  • Surgery to repair torn tendons or nerves, or to relieve the symptoms of nerve entrapment disorders.
  • A splint or brace to keep your wrist or fingers in a neutral position. This takes the pressure off the affected tendons or nerves.

Our goal is to relieve your pain and help you regain the full use of your hands, so you can get back to doing all the things you love.

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