When muscles contract, tendons pull on bones. This causes parts of the body (such as a finger) to move. The muscles that move the fingers and thumb are located in the forearm. Long tendons extend from these muscles through the wrist and attach to the small bones of the fingers and thumb.
How long does it take for a tendon in the hand to heal?
The repaired tendon will usually be back to full strength after about 12 weeks, but it can take up to 6 months to regain the full range of movement. In some cases, it may never be possible to move the affected finger or thumb as much as before it was damaged.
How do I know if I tore a tendon in my hand?
Symptoms of traumatic tendon injuries include:
- Inability to bend finger joints.
- Numbness or tingling in fingertips.
- Pain when extending the fingers.
How do you loosen tight tendons in your hand?
Start with this simple stretch:
- Make a gentle fist, wrapping your thumb across your fingers.
- Hold for 30 to 60 seconds. Release and spread your fingers wide.
- Repeat with both hands at least four times.
What does a torn ligament in hand feel like?
Signs of a ligament injury include pain and swelling that’s similar to many other hand and wrist injuries. The wrist may also look bruised or discolored, and feel painful for several weeks. In some cases, a ligament injury may go undiagnosed, causing the joint to heal improperly.
Can tendons heal without surgery?
More than 90% of tendon injuries are long term in nature, and 33-90% of these chronic rupture symptoms go away without surgery. In contrast, acute rupture, as occurs with trauma, may or may not be repaired surgically depending on the severity of the tear.
What helps tendons heal faster?
Tendons require weeks of additional rest to heal. You may need to make long-term changes in the types of activities you do or how you do them. Apply ice or cold packs as soon as you notice pain and tenderness in your muscles or near a joint. Apply ice 10 to 15 minutes at a time, as often as twice an hour, for 72 hours.
Can a finger tendon heal on its own?
While a cut or tear—whether it occurs in the forearm, wrist, palm, or finger—might seem minor, in reality, it can completely prevent fingers from bending. Because cuts or tears pull the ends of the flexor tendon apart, it’s impossible for a tendon to heal on its own.
How do you tell if you’ve cut a tendon?
Signs and symptoms of a cut tendon
- An inability to bend one or more joints of the finger.
- Pain when you bend your finger.
- An open injury, such as a cut, on the palm side of the hand, particularly in the joint area where the skin folds as the finger bends.
- Mild swelling over the joint closest to your fingertip.
Can tendons heal naturally?
Although many minor tendon and ligament injuries heal on their own, an injury that causes severe pain or pain that does not lessen in time will require treatment. A doctor can quickly diagnose the problem and recommend an appropriate course of treatment.
How do you fix a torn tendon in your hand?
Tendon repair may involve a surgeon making a cut (incision) in your wrist, hand or finger so they can locate the ends of the divided tendon and stitch them together. Extensor tendons are easier to reach, so repairing them is relatively straightforward. Read more about how hand tendon repair is performed.
Do Xrays show tendon damage?
An X-ray won’t show subtle bone injuries, soft tissue injuries or inflammation. However, even if your doctor suspects a soft tissue injury like a tendon tear, an X-ray might be ordered to rule out a fracture.
How long does it take to heal a torn ligament in hand?
Typically, in mild ligament injuries, normal activities can begin within three to six weeks. In more severe cases, recovery time may take six to eight weeks of occupational or physical therapy to optimize range of motion and strengthen the repaired tissue and joint.