Finger Pain

What is Finger Pain?

Your fingers are one of the most used areas of the human body, making pain in our fingers and hands some of the most debilitating. Pain in your fingers can be the result of repetitive motion (like typing) or physical injury (from playing sports). It can also refer to any pain felt in the fingers or their joints from arthritis or conditions of the ligaments.

People experience pain in a variety of different ways and, because your fingers have a high concentration of nerves, the pain in your pinky, ring, middle, pointer finger and thumb may range from a mild discomfort to extreme pain.

Finger pain might feel sharp, dull, numb, tingly, burning, throbbing, or some other sensation. This can be due to a wide variety of conditions, that often require professional diagnosis to remedy.

Finger Pain Symptoms and Signs

Pain in your fingers can manifest in a number of ways, including a burning sensation, warmth, redness, swelling, tingling, “pins and needles” as well as a more acute and sharp pain, such as occurs with a sprain or fracture. Though pain can sometimes be generalized across your entire finger, you may notice that the most intense pain is isolated to a single area.

Finger pain can occur in just one part of your finger, such as in a joint, muscle, tendon, artery or nerve, as well as the entire finger. This makes diagnosis by a professional especially important, as potential causes of finger pain, like nerve impingement or a bone fracture, could worsen if left untreated.

Structural Damage to Your Fingers

In some cases, you may be experiencing finger pain after a traumatic event involving your hand, such as getting your fingers caught in a door or while playing a sport or working out at the gym.

Structural finger pain is typically concurrent with a fracture, dislocation, a congenital deformity, or a torn tendon or ligament.

If you are experiencing finger pain from structural damage, trust that Drs. Jason and Mark Pruzansky of Handsport Surgery Institute will be able to offer you a full diagnosis following your exam, as well as a treatment plan to address your concerns.

Why do my fingers hurt?

Finger pain can be caused by a number of conditions or injuries. It is important to listen to your body and make sure you schedule an appointment if your pain worsens or does not subside.

If your fingers hurt when your hand is in a resting or in a neutral position, while flexed or extended, gripping, stretching, bending, straightening, or pressing down, you may be experiencing the effects of an injury or the onset of a condition. If your finger pain does not subside quickly and certainly within one week or the pain worsens or sudden swelling occurs, please contact us immediately.

Common Causes of Finger Pain

There are numerous causes of finger pain. It could be the result of playing a contact sport, or recreational activities. Even punching and grappling, or doing repetitive movements when using machine, mouse or computer at work, can cause finger pain.

Here are some of the most common causes, including overuse, osteoarthritis, fractured bones, sprains, and tendon injuries.

Fractured Finger and Thumb Bones:

A finger fracture refers to a break in one of the phalanges, which are the two or three small bones that comprise the thumb or fingers, respectively. The broken bone may move out of place due to the force of the injury, or the bone may just have a crack in it and stay in place.

Finger and Thumb Sprains:

A finger sprain is when a ligament tears or gets stretched outside of its natural limits. Ligaments are tough bands of tissue that connect bones to other bones. Finger and thumb sprains can result in pain, swelling, stiffness, and weakness.

Finger Tendon Injuries:

Tendon injuries occur when a tendon tears or is cut. Tendons are strong bands of tissue that connect muscle to bone. Tendon injuries can cause pain, swelling, and limited finger movement. Some common tendon injuries include: trigger finger, mallet finger, jersey finger, and boutonniere deformity. In many cases, tendon injuries occur as the result of a laceration or sprain.

Overuse:

Any repetitive movement from a non-ergonomically correct position can lead to pain, sprains, and, in some cases, tears. For example, writing for prolonged periods of time with a poor grip can lead to hand and finger pain. Over time, some of these small injuries may progress to more serious sprains and tendonitis of the fingers.

Osteoarthritis of the Thumb or Finger Joints:

The underlying reason for Osteoarthritis of the Fingers is little-understood but is likely due to a genetic predisposition that leads to wearing out of the finger joints after years of use. With Osteoarthritis the smooth cartilage that normally covers the ends of the bones in a joint wears away leaving a roughened joint surface. Though your thumb only has two joints, your pointer, middle, ring, and pinky fingers all have three joints: the metacarpophalangeal joint (where your knuckle is), the proximal interphalangeal joint (located in the middle of each finger), and the distal interphalangeal joint (the joint closest to your fingertip). Osteoarthritis can affect each of these joints and result in pain, swelling, and limited movement.

Getting a Diagnosis for your Finger Pain

Alleviating your finger pain requires that you see a professional to accurately diagnose the cause of your pain and develop a treatment plan to correct the condition.

At Handsport Surgery Institute, surgery is the last option and we prefer to work closely with patients through different treatment options, like physical therapy, occupational therapy, splinting, and medication before surgery becomes an option.

The earlier you are seen for your finger pain, the less likely it is that you’ll need surgery to alleviate your symptoms.

Treatment Options for Finger Pain

Drs. Jason and Mark Pruzansky are finger pain specialists with a combined experience of over 40 years. Because of their level of expertise and specialization, Drs. Pruzansky have successfully performed surgery on some of the most complex injuries and conditions to help their patients regain function and comfort following instances of finger pain or injury.

Non-Surgical Treatments for Finger Pain:

Oftentimes, non-traumatic causes of finger pain can be managed conservatively with rest, anti-inflammatory medication, temporary splinting, occupational and physical therapy, and sometimes corticosteroid injections.

Surgery for Finger Pain:

Minimally invasive surgery may be of benefit for refractory cases and trauma. Drs. Jason and Mark Pruzansky are specialized in microsurgery, revision surgery, and ligament surgery to treat skier’s thumb and trigger finger, among other procedures, designed to restore function and lessen discomfort in your hand.

If You Believe You Have an Underlying Injury or Condition Causing Your Finger Pain

Please contact us as soon as possible to schedule an appointment with our talented team. Hand Pain can present in many ways and be caused by many things. Call Dr. Pruzansky at 212-249-8700 to schedule an appointment, obtain an accurate diagnosis, and start to restore comfort to your hand.