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Archive for September, 2015

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The Push CMC Arthritis Brace is light and strong.  It is the best thumb brace available for relief of basal joint (CMC) arthritis.  The Push brace is fit by squeezing the imbedded metal insert to snugly fit the hand around the thumb.  It can be worn during household activities and sports like golf or tennis.  So it is easy to fit, easy to wear, and it is effective.  This thumb brace is a bit more expensive than other braces – you get what you pay for.  If you want to stop your thumb pain, this brace is worth trying.

Characteristics:

  • Resists abrasion: is more durable than other supports.
  • Covers minimal palmar surface.
  • Can be worn under a glove.
  • Can be washed in a washing machine.
  • Will not deform if left in a hot environment.
  • Latex Free.


joint

 

This morning I had to fast for a doctor’s appointment – water only for 12 hours.  The hardest part was not having coffee.  So directly after my blood was drawn I went to my friend’s deli.  Large black coffee and a bacon, egg, and cheese on a roll with salt, pepper, and ketchup in case you’re wondering.

Thomas is one of the deli owners and I’ve known him for years.  He took my order and called it into the kitchen.  The breakfast rush was over and lunch was still a couple hours away so we had a few minutes to catch up.

Tom was limping and wearing a basic knee sleeve.  He explained that he had been fishing all weekend and spent a couple days in moderate swells being bounced around on a friend’s boat.  The end result was a stiff knee and a noticeable limp.  There wasn’t any trauma just regular wear and tear.  Thomas in his in his late forties and spends most of the day on his feet, so a bad knee is a bit more than an inconvenience.

Tom has a family and didn’t have time to rest after his fishing trip.  He went directly from the boat to his fatherly duties, and then went to bed.  He woke up and then went directly to work.  Tom knew nothing about RICE.  RICE stands for Rest, ice, compression, and elevation.  RICE is good for knee pain caused by arthritis or a minor injury.

I explained RICE to Tom.  He said he hopes his schedule will allow him to try it.

Good luck Tom.  My fear is that if you don’t find the time, your knee will find it for you.

Now there’s a time to rest and a time to exercise.  Listen to your body.  It will usually let you know when it’s time for what.



Seated Leg Extension

To rest the arthritic knee or not to rest, that is the question.  Knee pain can be tricky to diagnose.  The knee joint slides, glides, and rotates.  There are ligaments, tendons, bones, cartilage….there’s a lot that can go wrong.  But for people with chronic knee osteoarthritis, they can usually tell if the knee pain is their “old friend” visiting or some new injury causing them to limp, shuffle, and creak as they walk.

If the knee pain is due to osteoarthritis, then don’t rest too much.  A healthy knee joint requires movement.  Bending the knee keeps the joint lubricated, and the surrounding musculature stretched and strong.  Resting is important for an acute injury, but for knee OA a low-impact exercise routine is important.

Inactivity can make knee pain worse because muscles become weak.  People with Knee OA need an exercise program that is safe for their knees.  And the exercise program needs to be consistent – a routine.  Your body needs to be used to moving.

Swimming, biking, and walking are great low-impact exercises that will get you sweating without beating on your knees.  Strengthen the muscles around your knee, keep them flexible, and your knee pain won’t be so bad.



basal joint arthritis

The American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons recommends the following Nonsurgical Treatments:

Basal joint arthritis (CMC Arthritis) will respond to nonsurgical treatments early on.

  • Ice the thumb joint throughout the day for no less than 5 minutes and no more than 15 minutes.
  • Take aspirin or ibuprofen to help reduce the swelling and inflammation.
  • A thumb splint will limit your thumb’s movements, allowing the CMC Joint to rest and heal.  The thumb brace should be low profile and easy to clean.

The arthritis may get more painful over time because arthritis is a progressive, degenerative condition.  If medication, rest, ice and a thumb brace do not work then the next treatment option is usually a steroid injection.  Steroids can relieve thumb pain for months but the injections cannot be repeated forever due to negative side effects.

If the conservative treatments do not work to relieve your thumb pain then surgery may be your only option.



CMC Arthritis Symptoms

September 4, 2015

thumb pain

The primary symptom of CMC thumb arthritis is pain.  The pain usually occurs at the base of your thumb when you grab, or when the thumb is used to force something.

Some other symptoms can be:

  • If the base of your thumb swells, is stiff, or tender
  • Less thumb strength
  • Less range of motion in the thumb
  • Enlarged joint at the base of your thumb

A CMC Arthritis Thumb Brace can be helpful for treating thumb arthritis.



Thumb Arthritis

September 1, 2015

thumb

Thumb arthritis occurs with aging.  What happens is that the cartilage erodes from the bones that comprise your thumb joint.  The thumb joint is also called the carpometacarpal (CMC) joint.

Pain, decreased strength, swelling, and a decrease in range of motion are indicative of thumb arthritis.  Any combination of these can make it difficult to do simple every-day tasks, like opening a jar, using scissors, or turning a doorknob. Treatment generally involves a combination of drugs, a thumb splint, and quite possibly surgery.