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Trigger finger surgery

Trigger finger (stenosing tendovaginitis) is a disease that affects the tendons of finger flexors and their attachments/loops, which form a tunnel for the tendons. People often talk about trigger fingers. The function of the tendon loops is to maintain the correct course of the tendon in the palm and finger. They create a kind of tunnel where the tendon can slide freely during its movement. Trigger finger develops when the tendon canal narrows, preventing it from passing smoothly through the tendon loop. Forcible passage of the tendon through a narrowed area during finger movements causes pain, knacks or skipping phenomenon and limits the movement of the finger. Increased friction at the site of thickening causes a local inflammatory reaction of the tendon (synovium) and the loop, accompanied by swelling and further enlargement. This creates a vicious circle, which can result in a condition where the finger can no longer be bent or stretched.

Indications of the procedure

The aim of the trigger finger treatment is to renew smooth passage of the tendon through the loop. Anti-inflammatory drugs are used to reduce tendon swelling, tablets or topical injection directly into the tendon are the most common approaches. Temporary immobilisation of the affected finger with a plate accelerates the healing of inflammation and reduces swelling in the affected area. However, surgical treatment is indicated in most cases.

Form of intervention

The procedure is performed on an outpatient basis under local anaesthesia and takes about 15 minutes.

Method and course of operation or procedure

A short incision is made in the palm with the transection of the tendon loop, thus stopping the limitations to the free movement of the reinforced tendon. The patient can thus move their finger freely immediately after the procedure.

Active exercise with the treated finger is necessary to prevent the formation of adhesions between the tendons and the surroundings in the early postoperative period. Sutures are removed in 2 weeks. It is possible to fully load the hand about 3 weeks after the procedure.

Form of payment

The procedure is fully covered by health insurance. The procedure is performed under general anaesthesia during a hospitalisation over several days.