What is it:
It’s a form of degenerative osteoarthritis, more common in women after age 40, which affects the base of the thumb and in particular the trapeziometacarpal joint.
This disease causes a deformation of the thumb, which loses its characteristic opposition, and makes gripping and gripping movements very painful.
The pain is caused by the rubbing of the bones due to the consumption of the cartilage and by the presence of arthrosis bone “beaks” that act as thorns, irritating the tissues.
To diagnose the disease and its stage it is necessary to perform a simple x-ray of the hand.
Learning new gestures to save the joint and using a night-time rest brace can often give significant alleviation. If the pain becomes unbearable surgery is indicated (both in arthroscopy and in open), which is performed in Day Hospital and requires regional anaesthesia of the whole arm.
The thumb remains immobilized for two weeks, and subsequently limited in movements for a further 3 weeks. Physiotherapy, which is as important as the surgery, is very demanding and lasts about 3 months.