One of the most common conditions presenting to a hand surgeon’s office is arthritis at the base of the thumb. This condition is 10 times more common in women and tends to present after the age of 50, although the earliest symptoms can begin in the 40s.
Thumb arthritis involves the loss of cartilage occurring at the joint between the thumb and wrist. Patients complain of sharp or aching pain that worsens with activities involving grasping and pinching. Initial treatment involves the use of a custom hand brace that is made by a hand therapist. For patients who don’t get adequate pain control with brace treatment, other treatment options include cortisone injections and surgery.
To learn more, watch Dr. Divelbiss’ video about thumb arthritis: