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Trigger Finger in Ventura, CA

Dr. Pickart offers treatment for trigger finger to the residents of Ventura, Camarillo, and the surrounding areas of California.

What Is Trigger Finger?

Also referred to as stenosing tenosynovitis, trigger finger occurs when a flexor tendon snaps as it traverses the pulleys within the finger.  Most commonly affecting the ring finger and thumb, triggering is painful and debilitating.

What Are the Primary Symptoms?

Trigger finger initially presents with stiffness and swelling.  Unfortunately, the disease frequently progresses to painful snapping.  In addition, bumps or nodules may be seen at the base of the digit. In severe cases, a popping sound is even heard during movement.

What Causes the Condition?

The tendons in the fingers connect forearm muscles to the small bones of the fingers. The tendons that flex the fingers into a fist are called the flexor tendons. When these tendons become inflamed, they swell. Swollen tendons are too large to slide through the pulleys within the fingers. The resultant snapping is known as triggering.

The inflammation itself can result from aging, pregnancy, menopause, thyroid disorders, or diabetes. Mild exercise does not cause triggering, but extremely heavy activities may contribute to inflammation.

How Is Trigger Finger Treated?

Trigger fingers sometimes respond to non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medications (NSAIDs) and corticosteroid injections.  If these measures to do not eliminate the symptoms, then surgery is usually advised.

What Is Involved in the Surgery Process?

There are two options for surgery:  percutaneous release and traditional open release.

Percutaneous Surgery

To avoid a formal surgery involving incisions and sutures, Dr. Pickart sometimes releases the excessively tight pulley by inserting a needle into the palm of the affected digit. The needle is used to cut through the pulley to increase mobility.

The advantages of the percutaneous technique are…

  • Easy
  • Minimal Pain
  • Minimal Downtime

The disadvantages are…

  • The absence of visualization of nerves and arteries, with a higher risk of inadvertent damage to those structures
  • Only appropriate for middle and ring fingers; not appropriate for thumbs, index fingers, and small fingers

Traditional  Surgery

By surgical standards, this is a straightforward outpatient operation.  You don’t necessarily need general anesthesia or, for that matter, any sedation.  Some patients prefer local anesthesia only.

Dr. Pickart makes a small incision in the skin, through which he visualizes the pulley that tethers the affected tendon to the finger bone.  After the pulley is opened, the skin is sutured, and a small dressing is placed.

How Long Is the Recovery Time?

Recovery time for a trigger finger release is rapid.  Patients are encouraged to move the affected finger immediately after the surgery.  Surgical dressings are removed after a couple of days. Most patients return to work the next day, and many resume sports within two weeks.

How Much Does Treatment of Trigger Finger Cost in Ventura?

Usually, the surgical and non-surgical treatments for trigger fingers are covered by your insurance company.  Pickart Plastic Surgery currently works with most insurance carriers to ensure that patients can receive high quality treatment. Dr. Pickart also offers CareCredit® and Capital One® to provide financing options for patients.

Dr. Pickart specializes in hand surgery; visit our other hand surgery pages including hand arthritis, Dupuytren’s contracture, and ganglion cysts.

If you are a resident of Ventura, Camarillo, or the surrounding areas in California and are considering cosmetic or reconstructive surgery, call Pickart Plastic Surgery at (805) 232-5688. Our talented staff members can answer all your questions and also schedule your consultation.

Written by Pickart Plastic Surgery August 13, 2013