de Quervain’s tenosynovitis

36237998_thbIn de Quervain’s tenosynovitis, the sheath of the tendons on the thumb side of your wrist becomes swollen. This restricts the tendons’ movement. The result with de Quervain’s tenosynovitis is discomfort and pain EVERY time you turn your wrist, grasp anything or make a fist.

This condition can occur in postpartum women due to the position of the thumb in abduction for extended periods of time while holding a baby. Additionally, prolactin levels in new mothers who are breastfeeding may have something to do with it.Β  Often, if a woman stops breastfeeding, de Quervain’s will disappear.

Your doctor may confirm a diagnosis of de Quervain’s tenosynovitis by doing a Finkelstein test. In this simple test, you bend your thumb across the palm of your hand and bend your fingers down over your thumb. Then you bend your wrist toward your little finger. If this causes pain on the thumb side of your wrist, the test is considered positive.

I was diagnosed with de Quervain’s tenosynovitis in BOTH hands several months ago. It’s a real pain (no pun intended). Movements like lifting the baby up from her crib, brushing my hair and picking up a pot off the stove are all very painful and aggravate the swelling. My doctor told me to immobilize my wrists and thumbs with braces (yeah, right – try doing that while taking care of a baby), ice it and take ibuprofen. Hopefully, once I stop nursing it will go away. I have no idea when that will be though, so for now I just have to grin and bare it.

Happy Monday!

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , ,

53 Responses to “de Quervain’s tenosynovitis”

  1. The Bombshell Says:

    I have it too, in my right wrist. It’s really painful and sometimes my wrist actually locks up and I have to wait to move it again. I’m looking into the possibility of a cortisone shot to help since I can’t take ibuprofen. Let me know if you discover a solution that helps. So far the thumb spica brace isn’t helping me much. Good luck!

  2. Anne Says:

    Mine locks too!! Just the left one though. That side is definitely worse. It hurts to the touch. Good thing I’m a righty. I think it’s time I asked my doc about cortisone. That didn’t come up during my first visit, but that was months ago. I started wearing the braces when I sleep, but I don’t know that it’s helping. I mostly try not to aggrevate the condition. I haven’t picked up my hair dryer in weeks (I’m so tired of wearing my hair in a wet bun). I try to pick things up with both hands, palms facing in and I hold the baby with my forearm under her bottom.
    Just out of curiosity…how old is your baby and when did you develop symptoms? My daughter is 7 months old and I developed pain when she was about three months old.
    Thanks for stopping by and let me know how you’re making out.

  3. Baby name meaning and origin for Spica Says:

    […] News Moms Need ” Blog Archive ” de Quervains tenosynovitis […]

  4. Grace Pettigrew Says:

    I was diagnosed with DQ last July 2009 on my left wrist first, then on my right wrist. I already had a cortisone shots on both wrists, it worked for a few months but now it’s back again. I just recently had a second shot on my left wrist, and I thought it was the most painful shot I had. I have been wearing splints on both of my hands, tried all the traditional interventions such as antiinflammatory meds, soaking my wrists with warm water and epsom salts, ice pack, occupational therapy, but none seem to work. There are better days but most days are not good. I am not a mother, but I’m a NICU(neonatal icu nurse) nurse. I do not think I can work with these wrists pain. I’m really hoping that the second shot will help me. I refused to have any surgery either. The Orthopedic Hand surgeon that I have been seeing is not helpful either. I just want this pain to go away and I really want to go back to work now. I missed all the babies at work:-(

  5. marie Says:

    Interesting, i have have been diagnosed with this too in both wrists, my baby is 3 months old and the pain started a few weeks ago in the left wrist and now in both.
    I was given splints for both wrists with the advice of wearing one at a time – even this is impossible with a baby – iv tried wearing them at night but found the pain in the morning more intense after resting.
    Iv been reffered for the injections which i am not looking forward to but im hoping this will relieve the pain πŸ™‚

  6. karla Says:

    Well, I’ve had it about a year now and is a pain in the >_%!!!! I tried a corto. shot (in left wrist only-luckily) that didn’t work. Went to a accurpuncturist twice-that did nothing and he kept telling me the times would be 4 times, then 6-8 times and then 10-????. My ins. doesn’t cover that of course so I quit him. I think if u do accu. you just have to keep going. I did’nt feel he really cared about me or my wrist. I have read SOOOOOO much about this terrible disease my eyes are crossed. I am now going by another accup. advise and she said Epson salts every other day for hands and to soak in the tub twice a week for my are & shoulder. It seems to me my tendons are pulling on my nerves in that arm and back. I have not read ONE good thing about the surgery so I’m NOT going to do it. Everyone says “It is worse now than later”. Good luck to all of us and I am just not going to use my wrist (easy to say-Ha-Ha!!). I’m also trying Emu cream-hasn’t done anything yet but has been only 2 weeks. I’ll let you know if anything else works. This is a really bad thing. Mothers-I don’t know how in the world u r doing things w/this but you are all great!! Hang in there all. Karla

  7. Sam Says:

    Thank you everyone for taking the time to leave your comments. I was beginning to think I was going insane! From everything I have researched I have DQ in both wrists. My thumbs are locking and I am in indescribable pain. At night when I go to lift my baby out of his crib to feed him, I actually have to psych myself up as I know how much it is going to hurt. In the morning my thumbs are locked and my wrists are so sore… When I have mentioned how I am feeling to anyone, I get this – ‘don’t be ridiculous’ look. I was hoping the pain would pass but it isn’t. I started experiencing it when my son was about 2 1/2 months old. He is a very big baby and there is no way I could wear splints on both hands and look after him. I’m going to try icing, and the anti-inflammatory medication – at least if that doesn’t work, I can go to the doctor knowing that this is a condition with a name!

  8. leticia Says:

    Hi Ladies,
    I am not a new mom BUT I had for the past year been struggling DQ on the right wrist – it’s a pain! I can relate to all of you, I couldn’t do anything without it hurting, sometimes i would have to let go of what i was holding because the pain was so strong. I had two corti shots and they did not work. My doctor recommended surgery and i was reluctant at first because i was afraid it wouldn’t work. But the pain was so much that I finally agreed to it. I had the surgery and it was the greatest thing ever! The surgery is outpatient, takes a short amt. of time, the period of recovery is short and now my hand feels great. I know how much pain the condition causes so I am only posting this to offer my perspective. hope it helps!

  9. Whitney Says:

    I believe I may be starting to develop this condition. I started to experience a stiffening pain in my left wrist (thumb side) when I woke. Thought I might have slept on it wrong. After a few days, I searched the Internet to self diagnose myself before I question the doctor. I was worried it might be the onset of Parkinson’s at first because my grandfather died of Parkinson’s and my older brother has it. Luckily this condition fits my symptoms to a T. My son is 9 weeks old. I hear that it should go away after I stop breastfeeding, so I will try not to worry, although after reading these comments I am worried the pain will get worse and progress to both wrists. Its a dull stiffening uncomfortable pain. It feels like I need to pop my wrist or massage the muscles to loosen it.

  10. Lindsay Says:

    Thanks so much to all of you for sharing your situations. I’m really sorry you’re having such a tough time. If you’re not sure if this is what you have, check with your doc.

    Let us know if the pain goes away when you stop breastfeeding. We certainly hope so!

  11. Lisa Says:

    I think I have this in both wrists however it didn’t start till AFTER I quit breastfeeding at 5 months. Extreme pain!!

  12. Mike Says:

    I have had this for about 2 years. I believe it is related from picking up our baby for the past 2 years. I have had 3 cortisone shots. They all have worked temporally lasting about 4 – 6 months pain free but eventually have come back. I am going for a 4th shot soon. My Dr. now recommends surgury and it does sounds like a simple surgery to fix this but I am short on funds right now for that. Maybe this 4th shot will work longer or be a permanent fix – I am hoping since I do not have to pic up my child as much as in the past now.

  13. Colleen Says:

    I had this in both wrists after my first son was born. Since I was breastfeeding, my doctor recommended ASTYM therapy. After several sessions, my pain was gone. I have recently given birth to my second child and am noticing pain again in both of my wrists. I really dread developing this condition again as it was excruciating the first time. But if anyone is looking for a way to treat the condition without the use of cortisone shots or medications, ASTYM may be the way to go!

  14. Alicia Says:

    Anyone know what ASTYM stands for? A part of me feels better knowing that I’m not alone in this struggle ( I am a new mom w a 4 months old baby and have DQ in both wrists) but a lot of the comments are so discouraging! I just hope it gets better :/

  15. Lindsay Says:

    Alicia, sorry to hear you have it in both wrists. Ugh! If you Google ASTYM, you’ll find several articles about it. I don’t know how effective it is, but some people seem to have had good results. Hope your pain eases up soon.

  16. Sarah Says:

    Thanks to everyone for posting, it’s comforting to know I’m not alone in this. I’ve had pain in my wrists which come and go after taking prescribed pain relief for the past 3 years, only this time it’s come back purely in my dominant wrist, and in the form of trigger finger on my other hand. Mornings are fun!! The pain keeps waking me up, never known pain like it, and I’m pretty sure my friends think I’m exaggerating the pain. Am on increased pain killers now, but so far it’s not working.
    Has anyone found an effective treatment for this?

  17. Asli Says:

    I think I developed DQ recently, I have a two month old daughter and have been feeling intense pain in my left wrist for the past few weeks. What kind of doctor do you see for this condition, orthopedic surgeon? What about occupational therapy, can it help?

  18. Lindsay Says:

    Asli, sorry you’re struggling with this. It can really interfere with the every day activities of daily living. I’d suggest you go to you primary care provider first. He/she can tell you if it is DQ or possibly something else and give you some suggestions, including referral to a doc in your area who specializes in treating this. Hope you find some relief soon.

  19. Heidi Says:

    You should see a board certified hand surgeon. I developed this problem in my left wrist when my daughter was 3.5 months and had surgery. It helped right away and took 2-3 m to recover fully ( had pain when really extending the thumb still and tenderness where incision was). It was a quick outpatient surgery and I would recommend it. I decided to do it because I know I want more kids, need dexterity for my profession, and wanted a fix. Now I have in right hand at 7.5 months pp and plan on having surgery soon.

  20. Evelyn Says:

    Well, I’m DEFINITELY not a new mom (I’m 66), but I have De Quervain’s Tendonosynovitis. No one believes me, but I got it from sleeping on my hand. I woke up about a year ago with my thumb pulled out of joint and twisted into the palm of my hand. Then my whole hand (thumb included) was twisted inward and half rotated to the other side. The pain was awful! Once I finally straightened everything out, the pain wouldn’t go away AND I couldn’t move my thumb without it jumping out of joint. I thought movement was the answer but found out months later that that only makes it worse. After being told that it was carpal tunnel and wearing several wrong types of splints, I finally went to my doctor a couple of months ago and she diagnosed it right away. With Ibuprophen and the right splint, the thumb began to improve but only to a point. As long as I stay doped up on Ibuprophen, I’m semi-alright, but stop taking the pills and the swelling comes back. Thankfully, mine has improved quite a bit since my doctor told me what to do, but I can’t keep taking ibu indefinitely. On the other hand, it’s better than shots or surgery, AND at least now it doesn’t feel like someone is jabbing a knife in my wrist when I accidentally make a wrong move. That pain use to bring me to my knees in a crying heap.

  21. marlena Says:

    so I got this from holding my fat baby as well. at first the doctors thought I fractured my thumb so they put me in a splint and made me wait about 2 1/2 weeks for it to “heal” it never healed of course. I went back they took xrays and there was no fracture but still a great deal of pain. they diagnosed me with QT and I am wearing a brace till help immobilize my thumb. everyone thinks im crazy but it hurts like a b%Tch! there are so many things I cannot do right now.. my hair, wash heavy pans, open tightly sealed jars, carry anything heavy… ANYTHING that involves my hand. it sucks!!

  22. Stephanie Says:

    Hi all, been reading your comments, i have had this for a year just been refereed over to physio now awaiting my first appointment. I have no children though. I have this in both wrists my right is the worst. I work as a care assistant and really struggling at the moment with the pain nothing works for it. Any suggestions?

  23. Peggy Says:

    I am not a new mother but I am a new grandmother. I also share a nanny job with my daughter, so when I am nor nannying, I am taking care of my grandson while she nannys. So I have a baby every day. The babies are 6 and 8 months old and neither of them is big. I have fibromyalgia so I am taking medication for that. When I last saw my doctor I told him about the wrist and thumb pain but I think he assumed it was caused by my fibro. I began getting the thumb pain about 2 months ago, noticing at first after holding the baby I nanny during her nap. I have learned that when holding the babies against my shoulder to not extend my thumb and the pain isn’t as bad. I believe that my thumb/wrist pain is QT and not fibromyalgia. The symptoms are exactly as described and started after I began taking care of my babies. I can only imagine how bad the pain would be if I weren’t already taking an anti-inflammatory. Now I have to decided if I should treat other treatment for it. And as far as being related to breast feeding, since that has nothing to do with me, I think that maybe the symptoms disappear when ceasing breast feeding because the child is older and doesn’t need as much handling. That is just an educated guess on my part. Good luck to all you new Mothers!

  24. Katie Says:

    Hello mothers, both the experienced and the new! I did not have this with my first 2 kids, but was just diagnosed with tenosynovitis today (my 3rd child is 14 weeks old). My left wrist/thumb side started aching about a month ago and like other moms said, I thought maybe I’d slept on it wrong or unknowingly injured it. I saw an orthopedic surgeon who immediately knew what it was after a few hand exercises. Like all the articles I’ve read say, he confirmed that this condition is common in new moms and in those who are still breastfeeding.
    I got a cortizone shot (VERY painful) and he said the area would most likely hurt even more tomorrow, but that it would then get better as the inflammation went down. I also got a little brace that he recommended wearing at nights and when I was not in need of using my hands, as little time as that may be for us moms. Hopefully his closing statement that this usually goes away on its own once breastfeeding is over is true. I’d hate to be that 5% who needs an operation. Good luck all!

  25. Susan Weaver Says:

    I was diagnosed today with DQ. I have been experiencing pain and most of the symptoms already mentioned in previous posts . After months of dealing with this I went to my family doctor and she referred me to a Hand Doctor. He confirmed that I do have DQ. Today I received a cortisone shot (ouch) and a hand brace. He said the shot may or may not work. I’m hopeful that it will because if a second shot is needed and that doesn’t work he recommends surgery. But the common thread here is definitely women who are lifting babies and I think I also read that one person is a caregiver; who also does lifting. My research supports the fact that it is often diagnosed in new moms. Hmmm, do men get this? I am a certified Postpartum Doula and I do a lot of work with new moms and babies after they come home from the hospital, which definitely includes lifting and holding babies. I am a mom but my babies are now 24 and 27 and I did not have this during their baby phase. It appears that you don’t have to be a new mom to have this. However, I am wondering if DQ might be more painful for new moms and nursing moms due to the hormonal changes.
    I wish all of you the best and especially the moms dealing with this.

  26. Jess Honea Says:

    I had R DeQuervain’s release the day after my daughter turned 1. It was diagnosed when she was 4 months old. That’s been 6 years ago. Now I have tested positive in my L wrist. I’m hoping to avoid shots & surgery. I’m actively looking for a brace but no luck yet.

  27. J Says:

    I was diagnosed with DQ’s in the right wrist yesterday and I got a cortisone shot (not too bad). I was also fitted for a spica splint. Very uncomfortable but limits my wrist movements. There’s still pain and no relief yet. I’m really hoping this shot works soon. I read it can take up to a week to feel any relief. My dr also said I may need a 2nd shot and if that doesn’t work there’s a simple surgery that can be done. I’m also reading that breast feeding can contribute to this? I am still nursing my son who’s almost 7 months. My pain start about 2 weeks ago. He’s about 18 lbs and I think it’s from picking him up incorrectly under the armpits. I wonder if the pain will go away after I’m done nursing. I plan to nurse til the end of the year.

  28. Monica Says:

    I was diagnosed when my daughter was 3 months old in both wrists. I got cortisone injections in both wrists. It lasted 5 months and suddenly came back. Doctor said I could try it again but decided I’d get the problem fixed permanently and I have had surgery on my left wrist. It’s been 3 months since that surgery and it’s been doing well. Tomorrow I get surgery on my right wrist. My daughter is 13 months now and this has been going on way too long! Ready to be pain free πŸ™‚

  29. Natalie Says:

    I also have DQ in both wrists. I was diagnosed when my daughter was 14 weeks old (but had been having pain since she was about 6 weeks). I got cortisone shots in both wrists. The shots weren’t too terrible and my pain went away within a couple of days. Yay! Unfortunately it has come back. My daughter is almost 7 months now and I’ve been dealing with the pain for the last month or so. I think the worst part of DQ is that nothing really helps, at least for me. ice doesn’t, immobilization doesn’t. In fact I think the thumb splints make my wrists ache more. NSAIDS don’t help, and I don’t like taking them since I am still breast feeding my munchkin. I need to just call the dr again. I don’t want surgery because I also am a music teacher and play piano for my livelihood. Has anyone found any at home remedies that work? For those of you who have had surgery, what is the recovery? Is your ROM and overall mobility the same as it was before you got DQ?

  30. karen Says:

    I too have been recently diagnosed with DQ. My daughter is now 10 weeks, I noticed a discomfort in my left hand when she was about 6 weeks then the pain started in my right wrist. This is my second child and I never experienced this with my first daughter. When she went for her two months check up I told my doctor about the pain in both hands, that’s when he did the finkelstein test and that was the worst pain ever. He told me to buy a splint and not to use repetitive movement, like what the hell. Since I am breastfeeding, he’s avoiding any antiinflammatories. I don’t know how much more of this pain I can take. As one person said, you have to pump up yourself to take the baby out of the crib. I’m wondering what am I going to do if this keeps up, I’m a RN, I need my hands. I read the replies where the cort shots n surgery sometimes don’t work, that’s scary. Something has to give!!!!

  31. Cherryl Says:

    I was diagnosed of Dq as well after 2 months giving birth , I was in agony to the point that I can’t hold my baby anymore so with 2 orthopedic drs advise me to ice and take ibuprofen straight for 2 weeks and wear the brace it didn’t work . I’m a new mom /still breastfeeding . I had both wrist injected with cortisone shot and the pain went away for 1 month and just recently came again ughhhh I swear this pain is killing me:-( . I went to my pediatrician dr for my 4 month checkup for my son and he was bothered why I’m still In braces after I told him about it he ask me if I’m on birth control and I said no , he advise me to try using birth control to balance my hormones and it may help at this point I’m willing to do everything and anything going back again for a shot and surgery . Well update if it works

  32. Isabella Says:

    I’m a musician and new mum. I started having pain at both wrists when my baby was almost three mths. I started physical theraphy through a doctor, then through another, as it didn’t solve the problem.

    Now, after four months of Ph T I still have pain, mostly during the night and when I wake up. I’m trying to rest. I hired a babysitter 2 day per week, and asked my husband to help as much as he can. He is working from home 2-3 days per week and I’m keeping asking to change diapers, pick up the baby etc. Resting helps for sure but I still have to change the baby, pick him up, hold him etc.

    For me this is a really big problem as it affect also my job. I’m not playing and practicing at all in this period, but I have to play a bit when I teach, and this worsten the situation. In fact, my left hand, which I turn to play (classical guitar), is more painful thank the right.

    I’m thinking about getting a cort shot, but I read it doesn’t solve the problem. I am really really worried. Please, post here if you had any good reccomend and result. Thanks!

  33. KG Says:

    Hello everyone! I was diagnosed in both hands weeks after I had my child. I ended up having 2 steroid shots in each wrist, only to have the pain come back 6 months later to the day ! When he was 18 months i finally had my surgery (moving from a different state delayed that) in my left hand, the one that hurt more, even though i am right handed. as of last night, i slept on it funny and it hurts as bad as it did days after my surgery, but i am able to do the finklestein test which i was never able to do. i am happy to say that now, my right hand seems to have almost fully healed and I’ve decided not to get surgery on it. it’s hard to deal with and the shots don’t seem to last. surgery recovery is only a day or two. if you have the option, i would say get the surgery. i was in the gym the next day, albeit only doing cardio due to the temp cast. until last night, i felt great, and i hope this pain goes away. i am a stomach sleeper and i sleep on my hand so i usually cause my own discomfort.

    god luck to all.

  34. Carrie Says:

    Hi I am not a new mom (daughter is 7) but I was diagnosed with DQ and carpal-metacarpal arthritis in my L hand from RSI due to work (on computer 8 hrs a day) and was given a immoblizing brace. Now i have pain in my R hand and was given the same brace for that hand I CANNOT FUNCTION at home or at work with both hands immobilized….what do I do??

  35. Claire Says:

    Thanks for writing about this. I had assumed being a new mom that I had carpal tunnel, but turns out the pain was DQ! I got a cortisone shot and was told to wear the brace as much as possible (not easy with a baby, actually impossible so I’m just doing it at night). It is better for a lot of things (reaching for a glass, putting on clothes), occasionally I still feel a sharp pain (ironically only with the brace on). It has been 4 days since the shot so I”m hoping it works.

  36. suzanne Says:

    I developed DQ right before my first child was born and it got worse once I started breastfeeding. I’ve had 2 cortisone shots that relieved the pain for 2 months. At this point my only option is surgery. For those that have had the surgery how difficult us it to car for your child during the recovery period? My son is 7 mos and my husband is home for 2 weeks than away for two weeks.

  37. paula Says:

    In April I had right rotator cuff surgery and now 6 months later I developed DQ and is extremely painful with certain movements, my question is have any of you developed it after shoulder surgery?

  38. Natalia Sanchez Says:

    I developed DQ in my right wrist one month ago when my twin girls were four months old. First tried carpal tunnel splint then thumb splint and after a week of resting the wrist as possible with twins it felt better. However after I began my regular activities it began to hurt again the next day. A cortisone shot was applied and relieved the pain for about four days. So now , I have resorted to taping my thumb to index finger and although difficult it has relieved the pain for today. More to follow.
    In regards to the above question regarding rotator cuff surgery, I have not heard anything, but perhaps in protecting the shoulder when using the shoulder after surgery it put more pressure on the wrist?

  39. natalia sanchez Says:

    Update! DQ symptoms gone after taping thumb to index finger for two days and the cortisone also kicked in. I was starting to get symptoms on my left so immobilized thumb by taping to index for 6 hours and no more symptoms so far!!!

  40. Carolyn Says:

    I am two and a half months postpartum and still breastfeeding. I have DQ of both wrists. I received a steroid injection of the left wrist a month ago. The pain was relieved for almost the entire month until the past few days. The pain is coming back. I just received the injection of my right wrist yesterday and it was extremely painful. I’m still in a lot of pain and have braces on both wrists now. I’m so disappointed to see that so many that have received the steroids have had the pain return. I did not read of anyone saying that they’d stop breastfeeding. If anyone did stop breastfeeding, did it resolve the condition? Please let me know because I really do not want to resort to surgery and I don’t want to stop breastfeeding unless it would really resolve this condition.

  41. adi's mom Says:

    hi all,

    i understand how difficult it is to you all with a painful hand and a baby to take care. i too have the same problem in my right wrist. started after a year of child birth. first got cortisone shot, got good relief in a couple of days after the injection. i started developing pain again after about 6-8 months. i decided to get surgery done, which i did. now i am exactly a month post op and the pain and discomfort kills me. i can lift my son up, wring clothes, do many household work, but chopping vegetables is almost impossible. if i do anything quickly involving extremes of wrist movements, it hurts and i end up dropping whatever is in my hand.
    for those of you who underwent surgery, how was your post operative period? how long did it take for you to recover fully?
    my orthopedician asked me to keep moving my hand but did not advise any physiotherapy.
    will i be alright soon??? i am in tears.

  42. Jess Says:

    The first pain that I experienced happened before my son was born. In fact, it coincided with the time that the colostrum began-about a month prior to my due date. It was bilateral. No lifting or strange hand positions caused the onset. Hormones??? I’ve been through two rounds of shots with both thumbs. They want to operate. I’m still nursing and asked that if I stopped would it just go away. The ortho said it would not. I got a second opinion from a hand specialist. He agreed that surgery was my best option and that there was not any data to support my decision to stop nursing. So, I guess it’s the knife for me. I can’t risk dropping my son. I’d love to know if there’s evidence to the contrary.

  43. Melissa S Says:

    Given that De Quervain’s and Carpal Tunnel are both linked with pregnancy, I would say that prolonging the pregnancy hormones via breastfeeding seems a good way to prolong the pain. However, before you give up breastfeeding or go under the knife, have you looked at your diet? I was diagnosed with De Quervain’s and on days when I’m good and eat a low swelling diet (like the ones recommended to reduce arthritis), my pain is almost non-existent. Doctors don’t seem to want to recommend it, but I figured since swelling was the cause, reducing other causes of swelling couldn’t hurt. I eat at least a cup of walnuts, cut out all soda, caffeine, and reduce my sodium intake to only natural sources (no goldfish for me on those days). I’m still looking for a more permanent solution, because it’s extremely difficult for me to go without my salty snacks and caffeine.

  44. Chris Says:

    it’s a common misperception that only new mothers or caretakers get this, it’s not really the case. It’s merely an RSI (Repetitive Stress Injury) people of all ages get it, kids too. Sometimes called “blackberry thumb” texting too much with your thumbs only, while grasping your phone. I’ve never had a baby and I’ve taken care of lots of nieces and nephews and picking up the babies hurt my back, not my thumbs. There is a higher incidence of de quervain’s tenosyovitis syndrome in women than men, but a male nurse I know had it and a male pharmacist. Nurse said his was merely RSI and same for pharmacist, opening and closing medicine bottles all day. I just had my first shot, and I’m wearing a thumb Spica brace for three months before I got to see the doctor, got it from a quick care visit. In about 4 weeks I go to see the doctor again, probably get a second shot. I’m starting to feel it in my left wrist also, because I’m trying not to use my right hand so I have to use my left and it’s over working it. They gave me a prescription anti inflamatory, and I ice my wrist often, 20 mins off and on. The shot didn’t hurt at all, it’s a very thin needle, and they put it in very slowly. I felt immediate relief. Now I’m trying very hard to keep my wrist and thumb in the thumb Spica splint and not use my right hand at all. I’m right handed and this is really affecting my life. Really hard to take your bra on and off too. Take the shots, it won’t go away on its own, take naproxen or whatever they give you. Wear are your thumb spica splint day & night. No one mentioned epson salts to me but I think I’ll try it. Hope I don’t need surgery. I’ll have as many shots as alIowed, I think 3? Probably try physical therapy if I’m still having issues with my wrist. If I have to have surgery, so be it. I’m told it’s a very quick recovery time. Good luck to you all!

  45. Julia Says:

    I had De quervain when I had my first son-about 3 months post partum. It came quite suddenly one night where my left thumb and radial side of my left wrist was in tremendous pain. I remember I wanted to scream because the pain was so bad lol. It took about 13 months to completely heal. For the first six months, i couldnt carry anything heavy or do too much cutting or cooking. I got tired of this ‘handicap’ and i started doung some stretching exercises and I gradually added weights. It was a slow process but now, I weight train with really heavy weights(i became very strong than ever), be able to handle my son, and do house cleaning or cooking no problem. So do not lose heart ladies, it will heal one day!

  46. Michelle Says:

    I too have DeQuervain’s but only in the right wrist, which is my dominant hand. It was nuisance pain for 2-3 months, but then one day about a week and a half ago, it became unbearable. Sharp, take-your-breath-away pain with movement. I’m not a new mom but do type and use the mouse at work a lot. So I can back up the “overuse” etiology of this condition.

    The pain got so bad that I made an appointment with an orthopedic hand specialist. I already knew what it was and he confirmed. I welcomed the idea of a cortisone injection, even though I am squeamish with needles, because the pain was just so intense and debilitating. The injection gave me nearly immediate relief of most of the pain. By the next day, the pain was down to 1-2/10 instead of 7-8/10. I am now in OT, doing hand exercises to regain lost range of motion and have a custom made splint. The splint isn’t going well — it’s too rigid and doesn’t allow me to type or mouse very easily. In fact, the muscles in my forearm are aching from wearing it awhile today.

    I am hopeful the injection is my cure. If it comes back, I don’t know what I’ll do. It is miserable!

  47. JP Says:

    I was diagnosed with DQ about a year ago, but have been dealing with the pain for almost three years. I think mostly related to overuse of my right hand at work, were I had to use heavy tools and apply a lot of torque on a daily basis. The pain on my right wrist did not become a major obstacle until I became a father. Without realizing it, I was putting a lot of pressure on my wrist from carrying my son with my right arm until he was about 10 months old (I have been staying home with my son since he was born and now he is 18 months). I’ve had two cortisone shots on the wrist, but they only lasted approximately 3 months each. The pain was completely gone during those 3 month periods.

    I have decided to get surgery, recommended by my orthopedist, who claims it should fix the problem. Recovery is set for 2 weeks. First week with a splint and second week waiting for the incision wound to heal. Then back to normal use of my hand.

    I hope his works because the wrist causes me pain when I sleep, write, lift a coffee cup, my kid, etc. Good luck to everyone.

  48. Nan Says:

    I first started getting pains in my left thumb/wrist about a year ago. I assumed that it was arthritis, as I am 53, so thought it was just part of the ageing process! I work as a support worker which involves pushing wheelchairs, and around June/July this year – the pain I was in was excruciating, so can totally sympathise with everyone on here. Luckily through my employer, I was referred to a physio, as blood tests & x-ray ruled out arthritis. It was the physio who told me I was suffering from DQT and this was the first time I’d ever heard of it. I had to take 2 weeks off work at first, but quickly made appointment with the doc to have the cortizone injection. Unfortunately, this did nothing for me, so continued with the physio, which helped slightly with exercises, wearing a splint and was also treated with Ultrasound on my wrist/thumb? Did anyone else have this? (The cold gel was really nice) – anyway, 4 weeks on and still in pain, still off work, so back to the docs for a 2nd cortizone injection – this one seemed to work. Each day afterwards I could move easier without the sharp shooting pains. Doc advised he won’t do a 3rd injection, but would refer me to a specialist and possibly surgery. I am coming up to my 8th week off work and hoping to get back to work after then. Although the excruciating pain has gone, at this present moment, it still makes “crunching/popping” noises when I twirl my thumb and can be “slightly” painful when doing more strenuous things like tightening jar lids etc. I hope I will eventually be pain free as this is a very debilitating condition. Good luck to everyone on here and hope you all get better soon. πŸ™‚

  49. Jessica Says:

    I began experiencing pain bilaterally when my colostrum came in-about a month prior to having my son. After he was born I went through a series of shots in both wrists. My physician injected me with betasone. I was still nursing.

    I wanted to try and delay the surgery until after I finished nursing because I had hoped it would disappear when my hormones returned back to normal. Unfortunately my left wrist began to hurt too much. My son was 7 months old when I decided to move forward with the surgery on my left wrist. Pain gone! The recovery was much longer than I expected. I needed PT to begin moving my wrist post-op because my tendons were so tight.

    Now for the grand finale!!! (sorry such a long entry) I stopped nursing when he was 13 months old. My right wrist flaired up 4 months later. It turns out that stopping nursing did not stop my inflammation. I’ve now had a total of 3 shot in my right wrist. My surgery is scheduled for November this year πŸ˜‰

  50. Kandie Says:

    Birth control does not help