Trigger Finger (or Thumb)
The medical term for this is stenosing tenosynovitis, but patients more commonly refer to it as trigger finger.
Triggering is when a finger 'pops' back and forth when opening/closing a fist. The finger can sometimes become 'stuck' temporarily as well.
Treatment depends on duration and severity, but includes medications, activity modification, injections, and surgical treatment.
What's really going on?
The tendon to the finger becomes inflamed and swollen (labeled nodule) and 'catches' at the entrance to the tendon sheath, labeled A1 pulley.
Surgery can be done with or without sedation, and even under just local medication, which avoids the grogginess of anesthesia or the need for a driver to and from the procedure.
Surgery involves releasing a pulley overlying the inflamed tendon. This frees the finger to glide smoothly when making a fist or opening your hand.
Once released ...
After the pulley is released, we verify to ensure that the tendon nodule no longer 'catches' or triggers. The procedure is only done when this is confirmed.
The incisions are cleaned, sutured, and dressed with sterile bandages.