Outcome of corticosteroid injection versus physiotherapy in the treatment of mild trigger fingers

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24 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

We compared the effectiveness of physiotherapy and corticosteroid injection treatment in the management of mild trigger fingers. Mild trigger fingers are those with mild crepitus, uneven finger movements and actively correctable triggering. This is a single-centred, prospective, block randomized study with 74 patients; 39 patients for steroid injection and 35 patients for physiotherapy. The study duration was from Jun 2009 until August 2010. Evaluation was done at 6 weeks, 3 months and 6 months post-treatment. At 3 months, the success rate (absence of pain and triggering) for those receiving steroid injection was 97.4% and physiotherapy 68.6%. The group receiving steroid injection also had lower pain score, higher rate of satisfaction, stronger grip strength and early recovery to near normal function (findings were all significant, p <0.05). At 6 months, only those who were successfully treated were further questioned on recurrence (presence of pain and triggering). Those who received corticosteroid injections had a significant recurrence rate of pain but not triggering. The physiotherapy group had no recurrence of pain or triggering due to the type of triggering responsive to physiotherapy or possibly due to awareness of physiotherapy exercises. Perhaps they were able to institute self-treatment on early onset of symptoms of trigger fingers. We conclude that corticosteroid injection has a better outcome compared to physiotherapy in the treatment of mild trigger fingers but physiotherapy may have a role in prevention of recurrence.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)27-34
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Hand Surgery: European Volume
Volume37
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2012

Fingerprint

Fingers
Adrenal Cortex Hormones
Injections
Pain
Recurrence
Steroids
Therapeutics
Hand Strength
Exercise

Keywords

  • Physiotherapy
  • Steroid injection
  • Tenosynovitis
  • Treatment
  • Trigger finger

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Medicine(all)

Cite this

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