How Can An Orthopedic Physician Treat Wrist Pain?

Posted on: 19 May 2020

Wrist pain may seem like a small inconvenience, but it can worsen if you don't take it seriously. When you initially see your doctor because of wrist pain, they may suggest wearing a wrist brace to stabilize the joint. If rest and self-care don't cure your symptoms, your doctor will probably send you to a specialist. An orthopedic physician specializes in the diagnosis and treatment of musculoskeletal issues. Wrist pain can be caused by arthritis, carpal tunnel syndrome, or an impinged nerve. An orthopedic physician can diagnose and treat muscular or skeletal issues in your hand and wrist using these techniques.

1. Perform a complete medical evaluation.

Your orthopedic physician will evaluate your wrist. They will start by asking you about your pain, including questions about onset, duration, and severity. You'll be asked to provide details about your medical history because some conditions that cause wrist pain can affect your entire body. Some issues are hereditary, so be ready to provide your family's medical history as well. If a parent or grandparent had arthritis, you're more likely to develop it yourself.

2. Conduct additional tests.

Your orthopedic physician will perform any other tests they deem useful. They may measure your grip strength to see if your muscles have been affected by your condition. X-rays can help your physician identify fractures and soft tissue damage. Bursitis is one condition that affects the soft tissues of your wrist. It develops when fluid fills the bursa of your wrists. Cysts inside your wrists can also be the cause of your pain. Your doctor may want to take MRIs or CT scans in addition to x-rays to confirm their diagnosis.

3. Schedule necessary surgeries.

If your doctor needs to get a better view of what's happening inside your wrist, they may schedule exploratory surgery. Exploratory surgery is often performed with an arthroscope, a small camera that can be inserted into your wrist through a small incision. Arthroscopic surgery can allow your orthopedic surgeon to see how carpal tunnel syndrome has damaged your wrist. It can also allow your surgeon to fix torn tendons and ligaments without needing to make a large incision.

4. Provide follow-up care.

After your orthopedic surgery, you will need to attend rehab to regain strength in your wrist. Proper physical therapy will ensure you achieve the same range of motion you had before your surgery. Some orthopedic physicians also provide physical therapy. Your physician will monitor your wrist as it heals.

For more information, contact an orthopedic surgeon in your area.