Category: Vissco

“Trigger Finger” is a painful condition that makes your fingers or thumb catch or lock with each other when you bend them. It occurs due to the malfunctioning of the pathology of the tendons and tendon sheath.

This condition can affect any finger or more than one finger at a time. One can also have it in both hands at a time. Trigger finger or ‘stenosing tenosynovitis’ is among the top five causes of disability in the hand. When it affects your thumb, it’s called trigger thumb.

The trigger finger commonly affects two very different age groups, children under eight and adults in their fifth and sixth decade, while being more common in the latter group. While in children there is a 90% incidence of the thumb being involved, the adult group can have the thumb or the ring finger affected.


  • A painful clicking or snapping when you bend or straighten your finger. It is worse when your finger has been still and it gets better as you move it
  • Stiffness in your finger, especially in the morning
  • Soreness or a bump at the base of the finger or thumb without snapping or triggering which the doctors describe as a nodule. A popping or clicking as you move your finger
  • A locked finger in a flexed position that you cannot straighten or extend, which eventually releases with a snap or has to be forced open passively resulting in pain in the distal palm and the digit
  • Swelling of the digit which on examination a tender palpable node is often felt at the distal palmar crease
  • Multiple digits may be affected in individuals with diabetes or rheumatoid arthritis

Symptoms often start mild and get worse over time. It’s more likely to happen after a prolonged period of heavy hand use than after an injury.


  • Repeated movement or forceful use of your finger or thumb at the distal palmar crease eg: long hours of grasping a steering wheel or use of pistol gripped power tools
  • Partial tendon lacerations- Tendons /tough bands of tissue that connect muscles and bones in your finger or thumb get inflamed
  • Long-term irritation direct injury resulting in micro-trauma of the tendon sheath leads to scarring and thickening that affect the tendon’s motion
  • Medical condition such as rheumatoid arthritis, diabetes, hypothyroidism, amyloidoses, gout
  • Commonly coexists with other hand disorders such as carpal tunnel syndrome, deQuervains tenosynovitis, dupuytrens contracture


[1] Age- Occurs between ages 40 and 60

[2] Sex- More common in women than men

[3] Health conditions- Diabetes, gout, and rheumatoid arthritis

[4] Occupation- Common among farmers, industrial workers, musicians and anyone spilleautomater jack hammer who repeats finger and thumb movements

[5] Surgery for carpal tunnel syndrome- It’s most common in the first 6 months after operation


Depending on severity of symptoms, adopt the following to your routine:

[1] Rest: Try not to move the finger or thumb. Give it complete rest and take time away from the activity that is causing the problem. If you can’t quit, you might try padded gloves

[2] Splints: The doctor can suggest one designed to keep your finger still

[3] Stretching exercises: Gentle, persistant moves that ease stiffness and improve range of motion

[4] NSAIDS: The doctor may suggest over-the-counter drugs that fight inflammation

[5] Steroid injections: Maybe administered into the tendon sheath


To relieve pain and regain finger mobility, you must exercise your fingers. Spend 15 mins on the below mentioned trigger finger exercises

[1] Finger Lifts: Lay the hand palm-down on a flat surface and then lift each finger one by one (focusing on even strength) with special emphasis on the injured digit. You should raise each finger slowly and deliberately then hold each finger/thumb in the lifted position for a second or two before resting it

[2] Rubber Band Stretch: Drawing the thumb and fingers together, wrapping a rubber band around them, and then opening and closing the hand against this resistance

[3] Finger-Thumb Circle Stretch: Place your injured finger to your thumb, essentially creating a circle shape (like the “OK” emoji). Hold this for about five seconds then repeat 10 times

[4] Tennis Ball Exercise: This exercise incorporates grabbing a tennis ball or a stress ball. Hold it in the palm of your hand and squeeze the ball for about five seconds then release. Repeat 5-10 times every day

[5] Finger Spread: Exercises that work on the abduction muscles can also be helpful for trigger finger treatment. Spread the fingers wide, then drawing them together in a fist and repeating the process

[6] Fingers to Palm Stretch: Begin with the fingers extended straight, lower them to touch the top of the palm, and then extend them again to the upright position.
Bend them again to touch the middle of the palm, unbend and extend, and finally lower them to touch the bottom part of the palm and wrap up by straightening the fingers. This is one of the most useful exercises to help relieve your pain

[7] Finger “V” Stretch: Hold the injured finger and the one next to it extended out. Then spread them apart from one another so they form a “V.” Place your thumb and index finger of your other hand inside of the split fingers and apply pressure to slowly spread the fingers apart further until you feel a stretch. (But do not stretch them so far that it hurts).
Repeat 5 times

In addition to these exercises, gently massage the joint or area that is affected by the trigger finger. Massaging helps circulate the flow of blood around your fingers and eases inflammation. Try massaging your hand for a couple of minutes every day before and even after you do the exercises above.

Experiencing Trigger finger? Click here to find out more about physiotherapy for relief and how ComfortMyPain by Vissco can help. For your fingers use Vissco’s Baseball splint and other splints as advised along with Silicone finger ring. Apart from the same use Vissco’s Active Flexi ball and Physical resistance bands a part of your daily exercise routine


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