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Neck & back strain AND THUMB STRAIN


#1

Hi all

I have suffered recently from an inflamed thumb tendon in my right wrist.
Very painfull if the thumb is moved awkwardly.

I now have a support for it but can anyone help further


#2

Physical therapy can be helpful in addition to shop modification.
Polishing motor vibration is a source of continual aggravation to our
tendons, secondly if your motor is old it might be worth replacing (new
motors vibrate a lot less).This is just a little of my experience with
arm, wrist strain Good Luck!

                Chuck  Marks

#3

About 8 years ago I had to have emergency plastic surgery on my left thumb
tendon. Last December my right thumb experienced the same problem.
Thankfully it was during December and January, when I’m on vacation, so I
was able to rest the thumb completely - everyone had to shuffle the cards
for me, cut my food, pour my wine, etc. etc. I was sure I was going to
need surgery again, but put off the doctor’s visit because I knew I would
be unable to work for six weeks and besides I’m a real wimp about
hospitals. Well, miraculously it cleared itself up - completely! I know
the pain, my thumb would lock itself in an awkward painful position and I
would have to use my other hand to unlock it. Eewh! Are all your knees
quivering? Well, my strong suggestion is that you avoid using your thumb
for as long as it takes or you, too, may get to enjoy the fine facilites
of your local medical establishment.

Nancy <@nbwidmer>
ICQ# 9472643
Bacliff, Texas US on the Gulf Coast just blocks from Galveston Bay


#4

hi!
have you been following the carpal tunnel conversation? that’s something
to watch out for. i have it and tendonitis from typing and it’s not fun.
What has helped me the most is alleve, sleeping in wrist braces, which
protect the wrists and hands from being put in awkard positions while i
sleep and taking breaks when i get tired. have you seen a doctor? -amery

Amery Carriere,
Assistant to the Director
Annenberg School for Communication
School of Communication
3502 Watt Way ASC304 F
LA, CA 90089-0281

phone: 213.740.0934
fax: 213.740.3913


#5

I have suffered recently from an inflamed thumb tendon in my right wrist.
Very painfull if the thumb is moved awkwardly.
I now have a support for it but can anyone help further

When this happened to me, I purchases the black foam wrist/thumb bands
(they wrap around the wrist and thumb and fasten with velco. they are
made for tennis players, can be purchased at KMart, etc.) They allowed
alot more movement and use of my hand and they seem to generate their own
heat which healed my thumb/wrist tendinitis in very short order. I still
put them on, I had it in both thumbs, whenever I feel that stab of pain.
Jan

http://www.designjewel.com Unique Handcrafted Jewelry


#6

I had a similar, if not the same, problem years ago which still comes back
occassionally. It was called Des Quervains (sp?). The tendons or
whatever which hold the nerves in the thumb become inflamed. I played
piano for hours each day which caused this. It tends to be caused by
repetitive motions which strain the thumb and the pain starts at the
wrists and shoots down the thumb. When it got bad, I wore an elastic wrist
band with a hole for the thumb. My orthopedic prescribed 800mg of Motrin
(Ibuprofen) which helped the pain. One product which is currently
available which seems to help are the “Hand-Eze” gloves which are
available through a lot of needlework shops. They are fingerless spandex
gloves which give the hand extra support when working. Hope this
helps.–Vicki Embrey


#7

I’m sorry to hear about your thumb. I had a car accident in March and
broke my wrist. After 6 1/2 weeks in a cast to my elbow, I began to use
my hand the best I could. Within a few days, I developed tendonitis and
synovitis in the base of my thumb and in the wrist- the tendon is affected
or moves both the thumb and the wrist, and it is encased in a sheath that
also became very inflamed.

I eventually found my way to an orthopedist who specializes in hands. He
made the above diagnosis, and said that tendons typically take about 6
months to heal, not including strengthening the muscles after all
inflammation is gone. It’s a slow and frustrating time for me. He also
said that if the inflammation of the tendon and sheath don’t heal, he
might consdier surgery to open the sheath and give the tendon a little
more room. In the meantime, I was referred to a physical/occupational
therapist who only treats hands, fingers, wrists. I have been getting
cortisone into the inflamed area by a process called ionophoresis. My
hand also gets coated in warm paraffin, (don’t try this at home) then put
in an oven-mitt type of garment, with a moist heating pad on it for 20
minutes. After some lotion, massage, and gentle range of motion
stretching, I’m off home. She also made a custom splint that is a light
weight plastic, molded to my hand and forearm. I wear this all the time,
but take it off every 2 hours for stretching.

I also take fairly heavy doses of ibuprofen, andmy wrist and hand are
slowly improving. I have had to make loads of adaptations to this
problem, in my work, and some things, I am simply unable to do at this
time. Actually, this is my first message to the group in some time. The
splint and cast got in the way of the keyboard!

I hope and recommend that you get treatment with a qualified professional
specializing in the hand. My first doctor, an orthopedist, but not a hand
doc, may have overlooked this problem, if he in fact did not cause it!Good
luck!

Ruth


#8

G’day Ruth Foxymom; Sorry to hear about your problem, and hope it soon
clears up, but it is good to have you back with us again. By the way; go
easy on that ibrufrofen; take a continuous course of those (particularly
if it is heavy as you suggest) and you may develop holes in the tum:
ulcers. Try week and week about. All the best and cheers,

       / \
     /  /
   /  /
 /  /__| \      @John_Burgess2
(______ )       

At soggy Nelson NZ (in mid- winter) well water surface 10" below
ground level.


#9

If I could just add a few more ideas about neck and back strain. These
problems are becoming more common as we do work that become more
repetitive. The human body is essentially “designed” for work. If it is
not worked you lose strength and suppleness. Overwork will damage it just
as much. The body is not “designed” for repetitive work, hence these
various problems of strain and muscle damage. Carpal tunnel syndrome is
more common in women that men, it is often caused by repeatedly putting
hands from hot water to cold as in washing up. It is usually treatable by
an operation on the Carpal tunnel. The other problem is RSI, repetitive
strain injury. This is common in people who use computer mice and do the
same repetitive motions with the hands. The muscles become enflamed and
need rest. So if repetitive actions can be avoided then there should not
be a problem. I suffered from very serious back pain and shoulder pain
when working at the bench. The only solution that I found was to do
specific weight exercises which along with less time filing helped to
solve the problem. This seems to be a penalty of doing something that is
physical but demanding on a few muscles.

Richard Whitehouse
UK

Email: @Richard_Whitehouse1


#10

Last year I began to have some serious pain in my right hand, I was
setting a lot of bezels with a rocker setter, and also using my hammer
setter constantly. Went in to the Doc, and he said carpal tunnel. I
said, “Oh hell” or something to that effect. Now you are going to laugh.
I have a twlve year old son, for whom I purchased a toy readily
available in the United States called “Silly Putty”. It is a small,
brightly colored, maleable petroleum based compound that comes in a
plastic egg, and is sold here everywhere as a toy. I found it one day in
the car, and took it out to play, squishing it between the fingers of my
right hand, and forming hollows in the putty, folding it in half, and
popping the resultant bubbles. It was great fun, and I was really
bored,(obviously).
I did this over and over again, until I noticed that my hand and wrist
ached incredibly while playing with this. Oddly enough, the pain
dissipated really quickly after I stopped manipulating the putty, and the
original pain that I identified as the carpal tunnel seemed to diminish
with it. I started playing with this stuff every day, and within a week
or two, all of the pain had disappeared. Anecdotal, to be sure, but the
Doc no longer finds any sign of carpal tunnel, or of the encroaching
arthritis that was also present. He’s prescribing “Silly Putty” therapy
these days. I used the glow-in-the-dark variety. Different types have
different stiffness.
Another note: I have small female type hands, and couldn’t use any of the
hand exercisers on the market because they are ergonomiclly built for men.
Oh I know how lame this sounds, but it’s worked for me and several
friends.Good luck! Lisa(Home at present, with 4, 12 year old boys here for
a sleep over…Kill me now) Topanga, CA. USA


#11

Last year I began to have some serious pain in my right hand, …
Went in to the Doc, and he said carpal tunnel. I
… I purchased a toy readily available in the United States called
"Silly Putty"
I did this over and over again, until I noticed that… the
original pain that I identified as the carpal tunnel seemed to diminish
with it. I started playing with this stuff every day, and within a week
or two, all of the pain had disappeared. … He’s prescribing “Silly
Putty” therapy these days. … couldn’t use any of the hand exercisers
on the market because they are ergonomiclly built for men.

Not so silly, perhaps. In '93, in a car accident, I crushed my left wrist
pretty badly. I took several months of physical therapy to get both range
of motion and strength back into that hand after the cast came off. While
they had a number of excersises to do and equipment to use, A major
recommendation of the therapists was a putty like product, which came in
different stiffnesses as well. For all I know it’s simply silly putty
relabled for the therapists and supplied in a more mature appearing
container, with, of course, a much higher price tag. It too was highly
effective for me, though the application was different. The interesting
thing here, though is that there is, in fact, a theraputic version of
exactly the same thing out there, already in use by the therapists. I
wonder why your doctor was surprised (or maybe he/she wasn’t…)

Peter Rowe


#12

.>I have small female-type hands and couldn’t use any of the hand
exercisers on the market because they are all ergonomically designed for
men… Lisa…There IS a good hand exerciser on the market, designed
by a hand therapist, that is not geared to hamfisted heroes. It comes in
three strengths (mine is light tension, which is quite enough,thank you)
It’s called Grip- Master and is manufactured by IMC Products Corp of
Westbury,NY (800-752-0164) .Actually, I picked it up at a music store,to
strengthen my fingers for guitar playing. Also helps for any kind of
keyboard dexterity,musical or otherwise. Well, that thing has been a
lifesaver. When I tore a tendon in my left index finger and had to wear
a splint for nine weeks, it restored strength and mobility in a very
short time. I can do all my jewelry work with no problems , and the
finger is not deformed. Recently my fingers have been locking up around
pliers or on a handpiece. I dug out the good old Gripmaster and was
surprised at the results. Just a few minutes worked all the kinks out.
There’s another product that works on the Silly Putty principle. It it
isn’t really a hand exerciser, but it gives results like silly putty.
It’s a tension-buster called “Relax”…a little soft rubber balloon-like
ball filled with tiny glass granules that you smoosh around in your hand
and ease the strain…in your hands and in your head. Anyhow, whatever
works for you, go for it! …Donna


#13

Lisa,
I am glad you replied. I was going to, along the same vein, but not quite
so imaginatively.

I picked up a tennis ball a couple of days ago and aimlessly started to
squeeze it. I remembered how important it is to strengthen the entire hand
to balance out the areas that are strained by repetitive motion. As this
thread winds around, one can see how very important muscle balance is.

For those of us with a little wear in cartilage, there is a product on the
shelves at Wal-Mart in the Pharmace department called ARTHRED-G. It is a
powder to mix in fluids or sprinkle on applesauce just once a day. It
contains Glucosamine and Chondroitin, both now recognized as able to
repair cartilage. This is not hype or the cure of the day. Persons
crippled with joint pain and arthritis have become mobile and productive.
There is documentation out there to support this.

All the advice rendered so far is valid, move around, stretch, exercise.
No one needs to live in pain, whether from bezel pushing or mouse clicks.
Teresa


#14

I know I’ve talked about this before, but I’m jumping in again after
reading Richard’s e-mail about RSI and carpal tunnel being often caused by
putting hands from hot to cold water.

I am not a doctor, so I can’t claim to know everything about it, but I
have it, as do 3 of my co-workers. I don’t know about the hot and cold
water, but I do know the main cause of carpal tunnel is a repetitive
motion such as typing, mousing, even too much needlepoint! RSI can lead to
carpal tunnel if not treated. Surgery is NOT the only treatment, nor is it
a viable one for most of us. If anyone is worried about having carpal
tunnel, please see your doctor immediately, it can be reversible, or you
can stop it from getting worse, if discovered in the early stages.

My case was discovered early due to the prodding of a
co-worker who had it and went through surgery becuase she waited to long
to get treatment. She made me see my doctor when I complained about hand
pain. She said the surgery took months to recover from and she still
suffers some pain and numbness.

The symptoms include, pain in the forarms or the hands, stiffness, and
numbness. Numbness is the worst symptom, and if you have it, please, i
beg you to see your doctor.

I was very lucky to catch mine before I needed surgery. Still, it took
months to get my hands back to a workable state. I was off work for 2
weeks, doctors orders (“or else it will get worse and you will need
surgery”), I was not allowed to do anything repetitive as in typing,
mousing, wirewrap, knotting pearls, or any detail work which would hold
the hands in a way allowing for a small range of movement. In fact, my
wrists were in braces for a majority of that time, taking them off every
hour to move my hands around. I also had to take anti-inflammatories for
two weeks and I still have to take them on occasion, after heavy typing or
wire-wrapping days.

I still wear wrist braces to bed, every night.
These are not the store bought ones, they are from my doctor and have much
more support than the ones I orginally had from sav-on (They resemble the
wrist braces worn for rollerblading). These hold your wrists in the most
natural position for the entire time you sleep which relieves any tension
in the wrist. One night of sleeping with your wrist bent incorrectly
equals 10 hours of incorrect typing!! I also do exercises prescribed by my
doctor, and my workstation is now ergomically correct as to keep the
pressure off my wrists and forearms.

If you think you might have carpal tunnel, please see your doctor.
My friend went through the surgery, and has told me that it’s terrible.
You can help it if found early enough.

I know I sound like i’m obsessed with this, but the pain I had was
terrible and I wouldn’t want anyone else to go through it.

Hope this helps.

Amery

Amery Carriere,
Assistant to the Director
Annenberg School for Communication
School of Communication
3502 Watt Way ASC304 F
LA, CA 90089-0281

phone: 213.740.0934
fax: 213.740.3913


#15

with chronic back pain from injury and tendonitis from years of
picture framing, I find that the key to keeping the hands loosened up is
varying activity, both during work and afterward. this sounds crazy but
trying to switch hands, ie develop an ambidextrous approach during
repetitive tasks (filing, polishing, burnishing bezel) helps stop those
kinks where one whole side from the hip up is wound tighter. using the
Chinese metal balls, in alternating hands, is good for after work hanging
around. playing music, like keyboard, loosens things up too. the main
thing is you have to think about it, and make the effort. it does pay
off.

eve wallace @eve_wallace1 boulder, CO


#16

I will add my voice to that of Richard about exercise. I had lower
back pain for at least ten years. It started after the birth of my second
and last child. I have never been muscular or athletic and my body wasn’t
happy about lifting toddlers, carrying laundry groceries etc. I eventually
figured it out and it happened like this. After getting older, I tried to
jog in hopes that I would lose some weight. Of course I had spent years
trying to watch my posture, and being careful of how I moved my body as
well as anything so I didn’t have much left in the way of muscle tone. I
didn’t lose any weight but about a year after starting to jog, I realized
that my back didn’t hurt so much. Ah ha! It was the stretching exercises
that had made the difference. After, I hurt my knees running downhill, I
found a gym and began to weight train. I’ll never be very strong but I am
stronger and my back rarely hurts. If, I skip the gym for a month, I start
to hurt. Sigh…forever and ever, I will be lifting weights!

Marilyn Smith
ICQ#9529587

Dr. E. Aspler
aspler@ganoksin.com
Managing Director
Ganoksin Jewelry Co.,Ltd

Webmaster Ganoksin Online

ICQ # 864 5224