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Article Summary:

SinChew Daily – 23rd March 2022

Doctor’s Words:

At first glance, some orthopaedic problems do not seem to be serious, but due to the lack of awareness of the patient, or negligence, in addition to suffering from pain after the injury, causing inconvenience to your life, you are even missing the golden opportunity of getting timely treatment. In the case of shoulder tendinitis, for example, there is a risk of muscle wasting in severe cases.

“Shoulder tendonitis, frozen shoulder, elbow inflammation, carpal tunnel syndrome, mother’s hand and trigger finger are common clinical orthopaedic diseases, but many patients often delay it for a long time, from 3 months till up to a year to consult a doctor and receive treatment. Patients will not only did suffer from more pain; a supposedly minor injury may become a more serious injury.

6 Major Orthopaedic Injuries That Can Be Cured With Early Treatment
1. Shoulder Tendonitis, Prolonged Muscle Atrophy

As we begin to step into our thirties, our tendons and ligaments will gradually start to lose their elasticity. We might not care about it in our daily lives, but repeating the same movements every day can cause tendons to tear easily. Some patients come for a consultation due to the pain, so the doctor will arrange for him to take an x-ray. Only then the calcifications in the tendon becomes apparent. These calcifications can cause acute and severe pain in the tendon.

The most common symptoms of shoulder tendinitis are pain, numbness, weakness, fever and swelling in the affected area. The shoulder cannot be bent or straightened, and you might even wake up suddenly during sleep because of the pain, causing a lot of inconvenience to your life. Therefore, during the clinical examination, it is necessary to check whether the patient’s shoulder is swollen or hot, whether it is painful and stiff when pressed, or weak when lifted etc. Some patients may even have symptoms of muscle atrophy due to prolonged delay.


2. Frozen Shoulders, Shoulder and Hand Pain, Unable to Turn

As for the frozen shoulder, under certain conditions, the tendon in the shoulder is overstretched and inflamed. If left untreated, it will cause long-term recurring inflammation. Once flexible joints have now become stuck like glue. Even the doctor is unable to lift the patient’s hands. This is what a frozen shoulder is.

It may take 1 to 2 years for a patient with shoulder tendinitis to become a frozen shoulder. Generally, acute inflammation occurs after the injury, and a doctor must be consulted as soon as possible. The symptoms can be improved by taking medicine and physical therapy. However, if it becomes a frozen shoulder, it becomes a trickier situation. Therefore, acute inflammation of the shoulder should not be taken lightly. If the patient ignores it, it can lead to long-term inflammation.


3. You Can Get Tennis Elbow Even if You Don’t Play Tennis

Tennis elbow or golfer’s elbow is an elbow problem. Despite its name, tennis elbow or golfer’s elbow is not an elbow injury that only occurs in tennis or golfers, it occurs at the point of origin of muscles and tendons, near the elbow joint. Any actions that we perform in our daily lives which involves the constant usage of the muscles attached to your elbow, or constant stretching of your elbow muscles and tendons at your work or during exercise; all of these actions can cause inflammation resulting in tennis elbow or golfer’s elbow.

The general symptoms include pain, weakness, fever and swelling. Often times, patients do not go to the doctor because they do not feel pain, or they do not want to go to the doctor even when they feel pain, until the pain becomes unbearable, affecting their daily life. In a doctor’s point of view, this is being irresponsible towards your own health as inflammation of muscles and tendons when left untreated, can have serious consequences.


4. Carpal Tunnel Compression Finger Palsy

Some 40- to 50-year-old patients complain of numbness and tingling in their hands when they come to seek medical treatment. They even wake up in the middle of the night and feel numbness in their palms, thumbs, index fingers and middle fingers. This is what carpal tunnel syndrome is.


5. Mummy Wrist Tendon Inflammation

Carpal tunnel symptoms are quite different from common symptoms such as Mummy Wrist (De Quervain’s disease). Mummy Wrist happens when the two tendons of the thumb are injured, but why is it called Mummy Wrist? This is because 70% of the people who suffer from this are new mothers or new fathers. But why is it new mothers and fathers who suffer from this? This is because it is their first-time being parents, with no prior experience in carrying babies. Be it feeding, showering the baby, or coaxing the baby to sleep, they tend to move their wrists too frequently, causing inflammation in the two tendons of your thumb.

The basic principles are the same. For non-surgical treatments, the patients will need to follow the doctor’s instructions, changing their lifestyles and also wear a thumb splint on their wrist. If the doctor prescribes some medication, it must be taken on time; the injection medicine will be decided after consultation between the doctor and the patient. It is rare for patients with Mummy Wrist to have surgery.


6. Trigger Finger – Unbendable When Becomes Serious

The last common hand injury is trigger finger. Trigger finger occurs at the junction between the palm and the fingers. The flexor tendon allows the fingers to bend, and the tendon sheath will thicken. Many patients when seeking medical treatment, are still able to bend and straighten their fingers despite the affected area being painful. This is also the first stage symptoms of trigger finger, such as pain, pressing pain, weakness, heat and swelling.

In conclusion, muscle or tendon tears, whether in the shoulder or elbow, my advice is to treat them as soon as they appear, and don’t wait until it becomes more serious before consulting a doctor. ”

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