Below are just some of the many hand, wrist and forearm conditions that Dr. Alex treats. If you are experiencing any symptoms described below, or something else, feel free to contact Dr. Alex to set up an appointment.
Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
Carpal tunnel syndrome (known as CTS) is a condition that develops from an increase in pressure on the median nerve at the wrist. The increased pressure begins to pinch the nerve and often results in tingling, numbness and pain felt in the fingers, hand, wrist and arm. The carpal tunnel is a space where the median nerve, along with nine tendons, cross from the forearm, through the wrist and into the hand. If the pressure gets too high and starts interfering with the nerve’s function, the CTS symptoms mentioned above can result.
Many people feel CTS symptoms at night and predominantly in the ring finger, middle finger, index finger and thumb. Loss of strength in the hand, trouble coordinating the fingers and performing acts of daily living (holding a tooth brush, reading the newspaper, driving) could all be signs of CTS. It is highly recommended you make an appointment to see an experienced hand doctor in Miami if you are experiencing any of the symptoms of carpal tunnel syndrome.
If treated in time, CTS can be treated without surgery. However, if pain does not subside with noninvasive treatment, some cases will require surgery to relieve pressure on the median nerve.
Cubital Tunnel Syndrome
Cubital tunnel syndrome is the result of an increased pressure on the ulnar nerve at the elbow. The ulnar nerve passes alongside the bone on the medial epicondyle (the funny bone) and is very vulnerable to increased pressure. If the increase in pressure is too great on the ulnar nerve, it can cause numbness, tingling and pain in the elbow, lower arm, wrist, hand and fingers.
Cubital tunnel syndrome is caused by a variety of things, including prolonged elbow bending, resting the inner part of the elbow on a table or chair or the nerve being shifted around against the medial condyle too much to the point where irritation of the ulnar nerve results.
Treatment is usually non-invasive, but in some instances, surgery is needed to relieve the pain. The most common surgeries include repositioning the ulnar nerve onto the front of the elbow or sometimes the medial epicondyle will be altered to better accommodate the nerve.
De Quervain’s Tenosynovitis
De Quervain’s tenosynovitis is an inflammation of the tendons on the side of the thumb which can be very painful. Common symptoms of De Quervain’s tenosynovitis usually include an aching pain in the thumb every time it is moved, including turning the wrist, making a fist or trying to grasp something.
While the definitive cause of De Quervain’s tenosynovitis is not known, any repetitive motion of the hand or wrist is thought to worsen the condition, including playing music, typing, playing video games, excessive smart phone usage and cooking—just to name a few.
Treatment usually consists of identifying and altering repetitive motions that are causing the pain, immobilizing the wrist, medication and in severe cases, surgery. You will want to consult with an experienced hand surgeon in Miami first to make sure operating is the best option.
Dupuytren’s disease also known as Dupuytren’s Contracture or “Viking’s Disease” is a condition where the hand becomes deformed. Dupuytren’s Disease is a progressive hardening, shortening and knotting of connective tissue in the palm. This results in a permanent bending of the fingers (usually the pinky and ring finger). The condition is usually painless, but some people experience discomfort as the connective tissue becomes less flexible.
Because the hand cannot be flattened or the fingers completely straightened, acts of daily living are adversely affected. Dupuytren’s disease usually occurs in older males, but can be found in women as well.
Treatments include stretching and splinting in the early stages, but more advanced cases may require surgical treatment to help straighten the fingers and release the tissue buildup in the palm.
Fractures of the Hand, Wrist and Forearm
Dr. Alex and his support team specialize in complex hand and wrist fractures including distal radius fractures. The hand and wrist contain many bones and joints and consulting with an experienced hand and wrist surgeon in Miami is crucial to proper treatment and healing.
Dr. Alex has extensive experience in treating and operating on severe crushing and traumatic hand, wrist and forearm injuries, resulting from machine, sports, automobile and boating accidents including distal radius fractures and metacarpal fractures.
Ganglion cysts are lumps that form in the hand and wrist and sometimes in the foot as well. They are non-cancerous fluid-filled sacs that usually occur along joints or tendons.
The cause of Ganglion cysts is unknown but can be secondary to a previous trauma. They can appear suddenly or slowly grow over time.
If you wish to remove a Ganglion cyst due to impaired joint movement or discomfort, make sure to contact an experienced hand surgeon in Miami for a consultation to decide the best approach for treatment.
Trigger finger, medically known as stenosing tenosynovitis, is when one of the fingers or thumbs momentarily gets stuck in a bent position and then painfully snaps when straightened back. In severe cases, the finger being affected can become locked in a flexed position requiring release by a hand doctor or surgeon.
Trigger finger is caused by the narrowing of the tendon sheath within the finger. Trigger finger is more prevalent in women, people with diabetes and those performing repetitive gripping movements for work or hobbies.
Treatment for trigger finger varies, depending on the severity. Conservative treatment usually includes splinting, hand exercises and the use of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs). More severe cases may require a trigger finger release operation which can usually be performed under local anesthesia.