I had a little DQ.

DQ

No, I didn’t have this DQ!  Darnit!

In February sometime I started having wrist pain.  On the inside of the wrist right below the thumb, I would have sharp pain with certain movements.  It especially hurt to hold my phone or tablet.  That caused a big issue since I draw on my tablet and I had a pet portrait I was working on.  Luckily the portrait is for a friend who is also chronically ill, so she understands these things.

While at Urgent Care for another matter, a suspected UTI, I had the doctor take a look at my wrist and she said I had tendinitis and needed to rest it and it should be fine in a couple of weeks.  I put it in a brace and waited.  The pain and swelling got worse.  After about 3 weeks, I went to see my primary care doctor.  She took x-rays and they didn’t show anything.  She referred me to a Hand Clinic.  Of course, it took a couple of weeks to get in there and during that time, the pain got worse.  The brace was not helping.  The brace stopped me from flexing my wrist up and down, but not side to side, and that’s what was causing the most pain.

While I waited I kept doing research to try to figure out what was wrong.  If you search for wrist pain, you will find carpel tunnel, and not much else., and I did not have the symptoms of carpel tunnel.  You really have to dig to find other causes.  Finally I found something that fit my symptoms – De Quervain’s tenosynovitis.  There was even a simple little test to diagnosis it.

deQuervain_Fig2A2B

Finklestein test for De Quervain’s tenosynovitis  (image source)

The Finkelstein test is performed by placing your thumb against your hand, making a fist with your fingers closed over your thumb, and then bending your wrist toward your little finger.  If you have severe pain, you probably have De Quervain’s tenosynovits.

 

 

 

 

 

De Quervain’s tenosynovitis is inflammation of tendons on the side of the wrist at the base of the thumb. (see image left)  So yes, a type of tendinitis, but not one that will get better with a brace.

Last week I saw the hand specialist and he confirmed my suspicions.  I have DQ.  He even drew a little picture explaining it.  He told me the brace was useless, to just get rid of it. (freedom!) He said that a steroid injection in the affected area cures the condition 80% of the time, some people need a second injection, and very rarely it requires surgery to open the tunnel and make more room for the tendons.

20180408_151815.jpg So I got a shot.  He tried to be gentle but, Oh boy did that hurt!  He said I should feel some relief immediately because the shot has some numbing medication, and I would feel lasting relief in a day or two.  If the pain comes back after a couple of months, I’ll need another injection.  If it comes back after that, then I’ll need surgery.

I didn’t really feel the immediate relief he spoke of, but the next day it was like a light switch cut off.  The pain was almost completely gone.  By day two, I barely felt pain at all.  Now, I’m still barely feeling any pain, every once in a while I’ll get a twinge, but that’s all.  I’m amazed!  After 2 months of intense pain, I had one shot and it’s gone!  Wow, if only everything I had could be cured so easily.  Yes, I know the pain could come back, but I’m taking this as a win!

What causes this?  They aren’t exactly sure.  It can be from repetitive motion using the wrist, like picking up a baby (I can’t tell you the last time I picked up a baby).  It is often seen in new mothers and middle aged women.  It could be caused by hormonal fluctuations, or other conditions like arthritis.  Anything that causes swelling really.  I’m thinking mine was caused by the way I was holding my tablet while drawing, it put a lot of pressure on my thumb and bent my wrist.  I’ve since gotten a new computer and I don’t hold it like I was holding my tablet, so I’m hoping I don’t have a repeat of this.

Last night I was even able to finish my latest pet portrait.

kermit4

What do you think?

 

* painting by W. Holcombe.  All rights reserved.  Do not use without permission.

 

 

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18 thoughts on “I had a little DQ.

  1. Sounds like what I have at the base of my right thumb. I figured arthritis and overuse on the computer and writing letters every day. When I stay away from those activities it gets better. But I am not able to stay away long enough for it to go away–LOL! Mine doesn’t hurt as bad as yours, though. So I think mine is just arthritis inflammation.

    I’m so glad the shot helped. I think the other kind of DQ would be a lot better–LOL!

    That looks like a photo! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Well Rita if yours gets worse, you know a steroid shot can help. 😉
      I have to change the way I hold things, like my phone, which I’m always on, and rest more. If I do too much I need to ice it. And he said something like advil will help, but I can’t take that.

      Yes, the other DQ would be better.

      Thank you about the painting.
      It looks a lot more like a painting when it’s big. 🙂

      Like

  2. I have never heard of this! Don’t you know that as soon as I saw the picture for the test I try to see if I had any pain? LOL! I had just a very slight amount of pain so that must be normal.

    The portrait is beautiful! Goidness, you are so talented!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Denise!! Welcome back!! I just read your post. Haven’t been by to comment, but I missed you!!!
      Of course you had to do the test! I’d be amazed if you didn’t.
      I’d never heard of it either, that’s why I shared. It’s all better now!
      Thank you for your kind words.
      I’m glad you like Kermit’s portrait. 🙂

      Like

  3. My mother had what the doc had said was tendinitis in her elbow a few months ago (though I disagreed that’s what it was); half the time I think they guess without too much effort, so I’m glad you had further investigations. That Finkelstein test is new to me, and De Quervain’s tenosynovitis certainly is completely new to me – you learn something new every day, as they say! So glad to hear the shot, although painful at first, has helped… Will keep my fingers crossed things improve as surgery is the last thing you need. And the pet portrait… wow, Wendy!! Amazing!!
    Caz xx

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  4. I think my hubby needs to take the Finkelstein test…..he is always complaining about his thumb. The other day some guy shook his hand, squeezed a little too hard, he said he almost passed out. Glad the shot helped my friend!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Mo, I hope your husband can get the relief I have! I have to give it a couple of months to say the shot worked and it’s not going to come back, but I think it’s gone for good. I’m just sure of it. xo (thanks for coming by, I miss you)

      Like

    • This one I did on the Surface Book Pro. I just got it. I use an app called AutoDesk Sketchpad. I started using it on my Note 10 tablet, but I decided I needed an upgrade. However, the ones I did on the tablet are just as brilliant in color. As much as I love pulling all my paints out and feeling it when I paint, this is cleaner…ha..and seriously, by the time I get all my painting supplies ready to paint, I’m too tired to do it, so creating on my Surface Book is the answer.
      I’m thrilled you like it. When you see it bigger you can see the brush strokes, you can tell it’s a painting. It will be 16×20 when printed on canvas. again, I’m so happy you like it. I love your art.

      Like

  5. Wonderful portrait and so glad to hear you finally got relief from the pain! Yes, wouldn’t it be nice if other pain could be cleared up by one shot!
    I missed this as I’m not using the computer much (my own pain issues and feeling flat and struggling when it comes to words).
    The portrait is wonderfully expressive and realistic.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Wendy, I’m glad the pain is gone from your wrist. It sounded very sore. I get some pain, mainly discomfort from my wrists from the walking sticks (even the ‘ergonomic’ one). The dog portrait is beautiful, I bet your friend is pleased. I’ve never heard of that software before, I use Paintshop Pro from Corel since I cannot afford the professional Photoshop these days (which I learnt graphic art on). I’ve been doing hand-drawn animation using a ‘light-box’ (flat) which plugs into the computer, it’s brilliant. Good to see you creating art my friend. 🙂 xo

    Like

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