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-   -   Grip pain in thumb and wrist (http://tt.tennis-warehouse.com/showthread.php?t=374761)

Power Player 04-01-2011 07:30 PM

Grip pain in thumb and wrist
 
Now and then I get pain in my wrist and thumb when I grip. Obviously hinders my tennis a bit and I am not sure what causes it.

The pain starts on my wrist. If you traced a line around your hand, the pain starts 2 inches before the wrist and goes into the thumb joint as well.

It can make it hard to hold a racquet until I get warmed up. It's really odd and I figure must be connected to an injured wrist.

I have experienced it regardless of racquet and string selection.

Anyone deal with this?

LeeD 04-01-2011 08:38 PM

I get all sorts of old fart's hand pain, and stretching it a bit before actually hitting helps rid the cobwebs from the joint. I'll admit most is base of pinkiefinger for me, but I've had that pinch sensation between thumb and forefinger, but at the wrist.

Robbnc 04-02-2011 09:42 AM

Radial styloid tenosynovitis aka De Quervains Syndrome ...possibly.

Power Player 05-16-2011 07:10 AM

I may have it..it's getting worse..it is irritated by serving. That is what gets to me the most. The first few times I serve, it can be sharp pain on contact and I can barely hit the ball over the net. Then it gradually subsides, but now it is showing up in my ground strokes as well. Really made an appearance after serving yesterday..started practicing groundstrokes and it was hurting on both back and forehand.

magnut 05-16-2011 07:19 AM

Whats your string and racquet combo. Do you use really small grips.

I had some pretty major wrist issues a while back. Small grips and poly were the agitators.

Power Player 05-16-2011 07:31 AM

What were your wrist issues like? I know a lot of people can get them on the outside of their wrist as well.

It seems like I have had this no matter what the string or racquet. I am going to switch to synthetic gut for a bit to be safe, since I do prefer full poly. Grip size is 3/8ths, which is the correct size for my hand.

I currently use the Donnay Dual core with soft co poly (b5e). this happened with flexier prestiges, Dunlops..the flexier Donnay Black..just can't seem to solve it so far with a string or racquet change.

magnut 05-16-2011 07:45 AM

Mine was serve tendon inflimation at the wrist. and actually thought I had a cist in there.. I had a hard knot form and it was very painful. Then the pain worked its way into the elbow. Thats when I stopped and took a year off and started playing and teaching left handed. I dont use poly anymore.

I should say that my wrists and arms are very strong so that was not the issue. My rackets are 12.5-13 ounces and very flexible. My technique is pretty much perfect and I dont arm the ball but use rotation of the body to swing the arms.

Its a lot better now. Wrist is fine. Elbow is getting there. My left arm is 100% even though it was weaker and has stood up to rediculoussly long hitting sessions and other training. I just dont use poly anymore.

That dang string almost took me out of the game. I thought I was going to need surgery to fix my issues and I am not one that likes to be cut.....hence the swicthing to the left hand.

I would try takeing a little time off, maybe playing lefty if you can deal with the frustration (hey your still playing and it will help balance out your body so to speak), and stay away from Polyester strings reguardless what people tell you. They did not do anything for my game anyways. I just thought the durability was nice. Volleys are for crap with that string.

charliefedererer 05-16-2011 08:25 AM

The only way to really get an accurate diagnosis and specific treatment plan is to be examined by a qualified hand specialist who cares of a lot of throwing athletes.

But it does sound like you have De Quervain's tendsynovitis.



If so, doing this motion will likely cause you pain:


You may want to read more about it on the Mayo Clinic website: http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/de-...SECTION=causes
Here is their description of its cause [with some added comments by me in brackets]:
"When you grip, grasp, clench, pinch or wring anything in your hand, you use two major tendons in your wrist and lower thumb. These tendons run side by side from your forearm through the thumb side of your wrist. They normally glide unhampered through the small tunnel that connects them to the base of the thumb. In de Quervain's tenosynovitis, the tendons' slippery covering [called the synovial sheath] becomes inflamed, restricting movement of the tendons.

Chronic overuse of your wrist is commonly associated with de Quervain's tenosynovitis. For example, wringing out a cloth involves a repetitive motion, a bent wrist and the gripping of the cloth. [Similarly, ''laying the wrist back" to "aim the butt of the racquet at the ball", then rapid ulnar extension of the wrist as you snap the racquet forward as you go to hit the ball on groundstrokes or the serve, will involve a repetitive motion that moves these two tendons through the narrow tunnel at the wrist.] If you repeat an action like this day after day, this combination may be enough to irritate the sheath around the two tendons. [That synovial sheath should normally be very smooth, and even contain a "slippery fluid" to let the tendons slide, but with enough overuse, it can eventually become inflammed.]"

Rest from tennis is required to let the inflammation subside.

If you keep "playing through the pain" you risk the inflammation becoming more advanced, and the delicate sheath that should provide a slippery tunnel can get all scarred up, and never be normal again.

Note that other motions, including lots of movement of a computer mouse, may also exacerbate the symptoms.

Sometimes a cortisone injection is necessary to stop the inflammation.

Sometimes a splint is necessary to prevent any sliding of the tendons, even while sleeping.

Sometimes, the problem keeps recurring, and the tunnel and/or synovial sheath need to be openened in a surgical procedure to decompress the tendons.

But really, do yourself a favor and get examined by a local expert who can make a definitive diagnosis, and guide you through until you are "all better", and even help design a physical therapy regimen to help prevent recurrence.

Best wishes for a speedy recovery.

magnut 05-16-2011 08:38 AM

yup. Thats where my problems were at.

I dunno about doctors anymore. I have been misdiagnosed a lot. One told me my back would need to be fused (It didnt). Another told me I needed knee surgery (I didnt). I was also told that my wrist needed to cut operated on (it didnt). Seems like they just always wanted to cut me and perform some procedure. I dont trust doctors anymore.

Wait till you have a child. The doctor wanted to induce my wife when she was already in labor. I said what the hell for.......SHES IN LABOR ALREADY! I had to tell him to get the hell out and send in the midwife.

Our bodies are complicated but they have fantastic abilities to heal on there own if the right steps are taken.

ab70 05-16-2011 09:41 AM

one thing that helped me tremebdously with De Quervain's is sleeping in the wirst brace. sort of gets you to neutral and puts the joint in not strained condition for a good amount of time.

Power Player 05-16-2011 11:15 AM

Thanks Charlie. I started sleeping in a wrist brace. It is just a wrap with a hole for my thumb that wraps around the wrist.

Is there an even better brace I should consider..something for the thumb itself, or am I good.

Surprisingly I can do the diagrammed exercise without pain, but everything else that is described sounds accurate.

ab70 05-16-2011 02:56 PM

the one I have has a support for the tumb which keep at around 30-45 degree angle relative to the rest of my palm. The one with the hole is helpful but more suitable for ulnar side issues.

charliefedererer 05-16-2011 05:34 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Power Player (Post 5656330)
Thanks Charlie. I started sleeping in a wrist brace. It is just a wrap with a hole for my thumb that wraps around the wrist.

Is there an even better brace I should consider..something for the thumb itself, or am I good.

Surprisingly I can do the diagrammed exercise without pain, but everything else that is described sounds accurate.

Hmm...

Usually it is exactly that motion of ulnar deviation that causes the discomfort.

So here is the problem with being really sure about any diagnosis or treatment without an exam.

In any event, if it still is De Quervain's stenosing tenosynovitis, a splint that immobilizes the thumb is usually advised to prevent this exact ulnar devation motion that causes the tendons to move back and forth through that tendon sheath.

But the wrist is a very complex area and there a lot of tendons and nerves that have to squeeze through the relatively narrow wrist to control the larger area distally in the hand and fingers:


So it is also possible that you have a different problem, like tendonitis of the flexor carpi radialis, in which case the pain would be less along the side of the wrist and more over the front of the wrist on the thumb side (along the path of the Flex. carp. rad. as labelled above), and which wouldn't need a wrist splint that included the thumb.

Power Player 05-17-2011 06:06 AM

I appreciate your help on this. Obviously I need to bite the bullet and find a doc, it just sucks because I have not used my health insurance at all, and have not touched the deductible. I have a feeling this could get costly in a hurry.

I also think I may have the wrong brace since my thumb hurts and is part of this pain. Makes it tough to grip the racquet on groundies. The sharp inside wrist pain happens on the 2 handed backhand (conti grip on injured right hand) and serves. Serves can be almost impossible right now. Lately the pain has seemed to creep towards the middle of the wrist on the topspide of the arm towards the ulnar side, and sometimes I can feel the tendons hurting in my forehand like I need to stretch them out.

Have had this thumb pain on and off, but I also hurt my wrist further a few months back on a serve and even with a week or 2 off it does not get much better.

Robbnc 05-17-2011 02:02 PM

If it does turn out you have De Quervains and conservative treatments fail don't be too afraid of this operation. I had it 30 years ago on both wrists at the same. The recovery is fast, pretty much as soon as the stiches are out you are good to go. I have never had another problem with it.

Boricua 05-18-2011 07:49 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Power Player (Post 5655643)
What were your wrist issues like? I know a lot of people can get them on the outside of their wrist as well.

It seems like I have had this no matter what the string or racquet. I am going to switch to synthetic gut for a bit to be safe, since I do prefer full poly. Grip size is 3/8ths, which is the correct size for my hand.

I currently use the Donnay Dual core with soft co poly (b5e). this happened with flexier prestiges, Dunlops..the flexier Donnay Black..just can't seem to solve it so far with a string or racquet change.

Never had problems with my thumb but recently Ive had . No pain in the wrist though.
I attribute the pain to full poly. When I dont hit in the sweetspot, I sense the vibration in my hand. This leads to inflamation.
I am switching to soft copoly main, with gut or multi cross, to dampen and eliminate vibration. Also switched to Volkl Organix 8 which has a new device in the grip that helps absorb the shock and vibration.

Use ice to prevent more inflamation and helps lessen the pain.

Good luck!:)

Power Player 05-20-2011 05:02 AM

I am seeing an ortho on Monday morning..hopefully this issue will be analyzed right and i can get back on the courts. I literally can barely swing a racquet right now.

charliefedererer 05-20-2011 06:19 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Power Player (Post 5666271)
I am seeing an ortho on Monday morning..hopefully this issue will be analyzed right and i can get back on the courts. I literally can barely swing a racquet right now.

Smart move.

You seem to love the sport way too much to allow destructive, permanent scarring to deprive you of many more decades of tennis enjoyment, plus risk encountering difficulties with activities of daily living.

Best wishes for a speedy recovery.

Power Player 05-20-2011 07:51 AM

Thanks Charlie, appreciate your informative posts.

MambaT 05-24-2011 05:25 AM

Please... before you consent to surgery spend a few dollars on this book:

http://www.amazon.com/Trigger-Point-...6243679&sr=8-1

I went through a period a few months ago where I had serious neck, shoulder and arm pain. Chiro had me on a decompression table (time consuming and expensive) and was talking epidural or surgery to correct my "disc problem" that had been identified on a series of X-Rays.

I was not willing to have back problems at my age, so I went looking for answers. I found a reference to this book, ordered it, read it, and tried it.

Within one week I was almost pain free. What had become debilitating was almost gone for $15 and a little effort. I could sleep again and I could serve again.

The book claims that a wide variety of issues that are blamed on misalignment, joints, and inflammation, including TE and CT are actually trigger point (muscle contraction) issues that can be resolved with self treatment. After my experience I am a firm believer.

Worth $15 and a week to find out for yourself.

Oh, and it will make you angry at doctors... especially chiropractors.


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