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Can't bend wrist back,acute and intermittent pain my whole life!

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I've had intermittent pain in the top side of my wrist and hand since I can remember (I'm 25).

I had it seen to a few times and received physiotherapy with no joy, and have just accepted it ever since. However now it's driving me mad again.

I can only describe it as follows... I get the pain every few weeks or so, for no apparent reason (I usually wake up with it, and haven't done anything to day before to aggravate it). Then the pain stays for a few days, or longer if I try to use it for anything (I play tennis).

The pain is located in the top of my wrist and into the top of my hand, more towards the thumb side than the pinky side.

I can't bend my wrist back the whole way, pain or no pain. Anything beyond 70% and I will feel sharp,acute pain at worst, or at best, serious discomfort. So I can't, for instance, do a pushup, lift a waiter's tray, or break a fall.

In addition, if I press into the top of my wrist, I can bring on the pain myself without bending my wrist.

When I have a period of pain, it's very acute and sharp when it gets to 70% of the way back. It makes my wrist feel very weak, although I don't actually think it is.

Bending it the other way, forward, doesn't cause me too much problem, but it does make the top of my wrist and hand feel over-stretched and sore.

I'm sorry, this doesn't read very well or very easily, because it's hard to describe it! But any help would be appreciated. I've read all sorts and see it could be to do with ligaments, fluid, bone shape, all sorts! But if anybody has specific knowledge then I'd be very thankful Smile
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First Helper nick58360
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replied September 16th, 2010
I have the exact same pain. Did you find out what it is?
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replied September 21st, 2010
I have the same pain too. I got an x-ray but they haven't found anything. Looking forward to the next posts.
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replied September 22nd, 2010
Nope, haven't found out what it is. I've had the problem since I can remember and nobody's ever been able to tell me what it is.

PLEASE!!!! can somebody shed any light on this problem?!
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replied October 10th, 2010
Sounds like wrist tendinitis.

I have a similar problem and it comes from repetitive use of the wrist. Massaging the muscles in the forearm can relieve tension on the tendons. Eccentric loading excersise can help in the recovery phase. i.e. Doing the opposite exercise to what is causing the pain. Instead of bending the wrist back bend it forwards under load.

Before you start exercising though its probably best to see a decent physiotherapist that can assess the level of damage and start by resting the wrist. Resting the wrist in a brace using Ice/Compession etc is safest. Worst case it can take about 2-4 months to recover. If you catch this early enough it will only be mild inflammation and a few weeks and your better.


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replied July 6th, 2011
Scaphoid fracture.
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replied August 20th, 2011
I just starting getting the same pain it hurts so much it sometimes bring me to tears. I have no idea what it is.
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replied September 24th, 2011
Wrist pain
I have been dealing with it as well for 3 years.I have been cleaning homes for 13 years I am 23 now.The pain first came in waves it would last for a week if I was lucky and be fine for 2 weeks.Now it is all the time bring me to my knees pain.I can not bend my wrist back or forward with out a pain that feels like I am driving a wedge between my wrist joint when I don't use it I have vary painful burning sensation.The Doctor is thinking it is Tendinitis and recommended physical therapy ant-inflammatory along with rest in a brace for 4 weeks not using it at all.So I searched different stretches used in physical therapy being vary careful not to make things worse. and soaking it in ice water for 1 min then in water as hot as you can comfortably stand it for another min.This will increase blood flow to the tendons.I would switch back and forth for about 4 minuets altogether.Hope this helps!
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replied October 15th, 2011
I have the exact same issue and have for about 5 yrs, i'm 25 now.

When it 1st started it was happening wih throbbing in the forearm and lossbof feeling / use of some fingers. Due to this they did tests and found no nerve issues in the wrist but an ulnar nerve compression in the elbow. They operated but the wriar issue never really went away it was just less frequent.

Now it is worse than before (the elbow op seems to have fixed that issue but ther wrist must be a seperate thing) i am having an ultrasound on the wrist in 2 weeks so if i find out more then i will post again.

However i have been told by the current surgeon that it is VERY likely to be a ganglion in there somewhere (even tho i dnt have a visable external lump).
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replied October 29th, 2011
Hi again, just wanted to let u know that they have found the cause... And it is a ganglion in the joint of my wrist (but is not visable from outside as a lump).

They did an ultrasound and it was crystal clear!!! I was soooo happy that finally i could see the thing which caused me so many problems but docs said there was nothing there!!

Ganglions are not painful lumps themselves however it was the location of the cyst which was causing the pain and limited motion, as they are attached to the bone and lie very close to the bone is was causing other things to be out Place!!

Hope this helps!
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replied September 10th, 2012
wrist stiffness post-surgery metal plate
I'm a court reporter and had a radial fracture fixation over a year ago. I have very small wrists and am now having trouble keeping up in court due to stiffness rather than pain. I had LOTS of OT. Does anyone know if removal of the metal screws and plate might free up what feels like a slowness in my injured side that is making it very hard to write on my machine? I write a few hours a day, type a couple hours a day at most. It's not carpal tunnel at all. Any help appreciated!
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replied September 10th, 2012
wrist stiffness post-surgery metal plate
I'm a court reporter and had a radial fracture fixation over a year ago. I have very small wrists and am now having trouble keeping up in court due to stiffness rather than pain. I had LOTS of OT. Does anyone know if removal of the metal screws and plate might free up what feels like a slowness in my injured side that is making it very hard to write on my machine? I write a few hours a day, type a couple hours a day at most. It's not carpal tunnel at all. Any help appreciated!
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replied September 10th, 2012
Especially eHealthy
maryyyyy,

It depends. If it can be shown that the hardware is actually causing the problem, then its removal is usually very successful. If the internal fixation is proud, so that some of the tendons are rubbing over it, then it could be removed. This is usually seen in plates that have been placed on the dorsal (back) side of the wrist. But, if it is buried, deep to the pronator quadratus muscle on the volar (palmar) side of the wrist, then removing it probably won’t do any good.

However, stiffness is usually not a problem caused by the hardware. Most of the problems that hardware causes are discomfort when tendons snap or rub over it. Stiffness is usually either due to the development of scar tissue from the injury and surgery or due to some inflammation in the tissues.

But, you can always have the wrist evaluated by your hand surgeon and you can inquire as to whether or not a hardware removal would help. Remember, though taking it out is usually a little easier on the patient (than having it put in), it is still a major orthopedic surgery (with all of the usual risks). And, every time you make incisions around the wrist, you run the risk of making stiffness and decreased motion worse (depending upon how your tissues react to the trauma of surgery).

Again, ask your surgeon. Sometimes, removal of hardware helps a lot (it just has to be done for the right purpose).

Good luck. Glad you are back to work. Hang in there.
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replied January 26th, 2013
xabialonz,

I'm not sure if you are still following this post, but I am wondering if you have found an answer or any relief. You described my wrist problems to a tee. I am 31 years old, and have had the issue about as long as I can remember. Throughout my life I have had recurring episodes that can last from a few days to months before completely going away. It has never been very comfortable doing pushups, but when I have this pain it is nearly impossible. I can remember many times growing up that shooting basketball after having not done it for a period of time would almost always bring symptoms on within a day. Same with doing pushups for the first time in a while. Many times though the pain has come up without doing anything at all. The pain is on the back of the wrist almost in the middle, but slightly toward thumb side. When having an episode it is sore when bending back to pushup position but much more so when bending back and putting weight on it like doing a pushup. Also I can elicit pain when applying pressure with thumb from other hand. My job relies completely on my right hand, so hopefully I can find help because it seems to be getting worse:(.
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replied January 26th, 2013
Especially eHealthy
Nick,

Unfortunately, the wrist is a very complex joint.

Where you describe your pain as being located, the underlying problems could be in the radiocarpal joint (or any of the bones making up that joint) or in the extensor tendons which cross the joints at that location.

You could also have an occult ganglion, which a benign cyst. They are most commonly found on the back of the wrist/hand. Though the ganglion is a benign cyst, it can often cause pain in the wrist especially when the wrist is dorsiflexed (in the push up position). Because the ganglion pushes other structures out of the way, and takes up space, it can cause pain when the wrist is used.


If you have not seen a hand surgeon, you might want to see one for an evaluation.

Good luck.
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replied June 12th, 2013
Wrist pain most likely a ganglion
Hi everyone I too have exactly the same symptoms, for three years it would come and go, it felt like I had broke bones and kept getting X-rays as I had been to three different doctors with no luck (they didn't have a clue) then I had enough and tried another doc cause I had had enough of the pain and he straight away said could be a ganglion, which up untill this point I had never heard of them before, and ordered me an ultrasound (and an X-ray thrown in for good measure lol) and as soon as the man did it he said yep you got one in there, six months later ie today I went back to get it aspirated as it has been painful again and they said there's no fluid in it but the area is inflamed so stuck some steroid in there. Time will tell how long that lasts but for those waiting for their cover, forget the wait and do it cause its not a big deal to get treated.
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replied August 8th, 2013
wrist issues with tethering after surgery
I had this same issue for years...... at one point A and E said i had a fracture on my lunate bone (My hand surgeon later said i nver had a fracture!!!).
nOTHING SHOWED UP ON XRAYS, MRI etc etc but i could still not so press ups, open doors and bare weight on my left hand.... fast forward....
I have now had 3 surgerys.
1st was exploritory
2nd was open hand surgery where he found a 5mm neuroma (tumour on nerve) and spiked bone growth. Both were getting pinched when i bent my wrist.
After the surgery the scar tissue tethered and my hand was locked in a very odd position and i was unable to bend it downwards.
I had another op to removed tethered scar tissue and the surgeon was there when i awoke (i even had my physio present in surgery) and he showed me that i had full mobility in my wrist. i started physio that afternoon but within 2 days my wrist was locked again and masses of scar tissue tethered again to my 3 tendons. I cannot bend it at all now and it poses serious issues for me....a few things... i cannot pick my children up safely with that hand as i cannot safely hold them. i cannot scratch anywhere on my right shoulder area.
I have also developed a shoulder issue now as i cannot get my finger tips on the keyboard so raise my arm and shoulder. it has been a nightmare and my surgeon says he wont operate again for a year.
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replied March 11th, 2014
Oh my goodness me too. I'm going on 8 or 9 years of this now. Ever since I was in middle school. I went and saw an orthopedic surgeon a while back and he told me that it's a common problem for teenage girls. Something about the soft tissue growing at a different rate than the bone causing hyperextension and micro-tears. I was told I would grow out of it :/ The most frustrating answer in the world and I'd love to hear if you guys get any better answers. My usual regimine that takes care of it is ice, advil, and a wrist brace at night. Sometimes I press against the brace at that makes it worse though. Any other tips that have worked for you guys? It's so hard to get the timing of the pain and a doctor's appointment matched up. I always get there like "oh well it's fine now but I swear I'm not lying!". I think we need a support group for this haha.
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