Trigger Finger – Causes of Hand Pain & Stiffness

Are your fingers stiff and sore if you bend them towards your palm? Maybe you suffer from a disease called Finger Trigger.

The movement of straight fingers points to something or bending towards the palm of the hand is done by a part of the muscle called the tendon (that is, the part of the muscle attached to the bone). In order to be in their respective places, the tendons are "held" by several sheaths called pulleys, which are shaped like a short tunnel


Under normal circumstances, the tendo is round or flat with a smooth and slippery surface so that it can move inside the pulley tunnel easily without obstacles. Trigger finger can occur if:

  •     Tendo swells and forms a lump called a nodule
  •     The sheath of the tendon (pulley) is thickened

Both of these conditions cause the tendon to be "pinched" by the pulley so that trigger finger occurs.
The exact cause of the trigger finger is unknown. However, trigger finger tends to be experienced by:

  • Pregnant woman or after childbirth
  • Menopausal women
  • Diabetes sufferers
  • Alcohol drinkers
  • Workers who do a lot of grasping movements


The symptoms of a trigger finger are pain and stiffness in the affected finger. Pain usually arises when the finger is bent or straightened, and is commonly experienced in the base of the finger. When the finger is bent or straightened it often feels the "cling" sensation on the finger. In more severe circumstances, the fingers cannot be straightened back after being bent without being helped straightened by the fingers of the other hand.

Trigger finger can hit each finger simultaneously or at different times. The most frequently affected finger is the thumb and middle finger.

For early-stage trigger finger, taking anti-inflammatory medication can relieve pain and stiffness, but cannot cure it completely. Anti-inflammatory drug injections provide temporary relief (for about 3 months) but are at risk of causing tenderness if the injection is made of the tendo. A fragile tendon is at risk of breaking up.

Advanced trigger finger treatment, and relapse after being given an anti-inflammatory drug (either taken or injected), is an operation called release trigger finger.

This operation aims to open (divide) the sheath of the tendon (pulley) which thickens and "clamp" the tendon on the affected finger, so that the tendo can move freely again without causing pain. This is a small operation (a cut of about 1 cm) that can be done with local anesthesia, takes only about 10 minutes, and the patient does not need to stay in the hospital. Surgery on trigger finger ensures complete healing without the possibility of relapse.

For more information contact:

Orthopedic and Traumtoalogy Clinic
Panti Rapih Hospital
Jl. Cik di Tiro 30 Yogyakarta 55223
Tel: 0274 - 563333 ext 337, 339

Posted in Orthopedic.

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