Swelling of the tendons and tendon sheath around the base of the thumb following irritation or constriction. Can be caused by overuse of the tendons, also associated with pregnancy and rheumatoid disease.
Ganglion cysts de Quervain’s can cause pain and tenderness along the thumb side of the wrist which is particularly noticeable when forming a fist, gripping something or when turning the wrist. Pain may appear gradually or suddenly and can travel up the forearm. There may also be some swelling over the thumb side of the wrist. A catching or snapping feeling may accompany movement of the thumb.
Non-surgical: The use of splints may be used to rest the wrist, other management includes anti-inflammatory medication or steroid injection into the tendon sheath.
Surgical: If symptoms are severe or do not improve with non-surgical management, surgery may be recommended. The goal of surgery is to cut the tendon sheath to open up the thumb compartment and make more room for the irritated tendons.
There will be some soreness and swelling after surgery which will get better in a few days. A splint may be recommended to allow the hand to heal completely. Physical therapy may also be recommended to prevent stiffness and restore hand and wrist motion. Normal use of the hand can usually be resumed once comfort and strength have returned.