Trigger Finger

Trigger finger or stenosing tenosynovitis is a condition in which the finger locks or triggers when it is flexed and extended.



Besides having a finger that locks or triggers, you have discomfort in the knuckles at the palm and finger.


Causes and Risk Factors

The condition happens when the tendon is too large for the pulley that it glides through. The tendon becomes irritated and swollen and must squeeze through the pulley and the sheath that covers the tendon. This causes the pain and discomfort in the knuckles.



Your doctor will generally examine your hand and discuss your symptoms with you. Usually this is enough to make a diagnosis.



There are several approaches to treating trigger finger including:

  • Splinting the finger so it can rest and heal
  • Taking medications to reduce swelling (anti-inflammatory drugs)
  • Steroid injections may be helpful in some cases

If these don't help, surgery followed by physical therapy may be needed.

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