Thumb is most important finger of all the fingers in our hand, without which you may find difficulty in gripping any object or writing.
Extensive use of thumb causes strain on the nerves and tissues attached to the thumb. It leads to dull pain in the thumb. Thumb pain when gripping a pen or an object is felt when the tissues attached to it are inflamed or traumatized.
When you suffer from thumb pain when gripping or writing or bending, you should always seek a physician’s opinion to know the nature of underlying cause.
Causes of Thumb Pain when Gripping are
The thumb is composed of bone, ligaments, tendon, nerves, arteries and veins. Any injury to the thumb or the wrist joint, can gives rise to pain in the thumb as the nerves are closely interconnected to the nearby structures of the wrist.
- Direct impact injury to the thumb. E.g. while playing basket ball or rugby.
- Thumb arthritis: rheumatoid arthritis is most common cause of thumb pain while bending, especially in the early morning.
- Ganglion: the ganglion may be at the base of the thumb joint or at the back of the hand. This soft tissue swelling gives a sharp shooting thumb pain when it compresses the underlying nerve.
- Dupuytren’s contracture: it is seen in adult men. The thumb droops towards the palm, and skin is hard.
- Tendinitis: the tendon attached to the thumb becomes swollen due to excessive use of thumb the other reason is rheumatoid arthritis.
- Carpel tunnel syndrome: the median nerve is compressed under the sheath which leads to pain in the wrist. The patient is unable to hold an object and drops down the object. Thumb pain while writing or playing guitar becomes very excruciating.
Treatment of thumb pain depends on the severity. If the pain is mild rest to the thumb is advised by doctors. Anti-inflammatory medicines are prescribed in most thumb pain when gripping or writing cases.
Physiotherapy is advised in many cases of thumb pain. Doctors also give steroid injections to relive the inflammation.
If all the methods fail, surgery is the ultimate option suggested by the doctor.