Steroid Injections – Additional comments

I suffer from mouse-induced pain in the lower joint of my thumb. My GP has offered me steroid injections. Can anyone who’s already had this treatment offer any comments? (Sorry if this topic has already been done to death. I’m quite new to this list. If so, perhaps it would be best to reply to me privately?)

Comment 1: Well, I suffered from exactly your symptoms at the base of by right thumb. The treatment my physio was giving me wasn’t helping that pain, so my GP referred me to a rheumatologist, who put in a steroid injection. It hurt like mad for about 3 days afterwards, and my consultant should have told me to rest it completely for at least this period of time, but he didn’t. The good news is that now 3 weeks after the injection I am almost pain free, as long as I take some mouse breaks, and car driving breaks, so it was worth it. My advice would be to get referred to a rheumatologist by your GP, and see if they want to do the injection, but get the consultant to explain clearly what they are doing, why, and how much rest do you need to have after it. (The received wisdom from my physio et al seems to be at least 3 days complete rest.) Hope it works out for you. (I’m a RSI sufferer for 2 years and recovering because of lots of physio, exercises, and an injection. I also gave my wrist a major break from keyboarding by taking voluntary redundancy. My RSI started coming back whilst I was courting my wife earlier this year!)

Comment 2: I have treated patients with pain at the base of the thumb by using a combination of physiotherapy and manipulative therapy to the joints of the thumb and hand. On the cases I treated, examination proved that this therapy would be beneficial, and it was. The manipulation (adjustment) of the thumb brought about great relief. This is not to say that everybody who has pain at the base of the thumb needs thumb joint manipulation. But it is something to keep in mind. I abhor the use of steroids as a general treatment program for these injuries. Not only does it weaken the surrounding ligaments and tendons, it suppresses the immune system also. It’s not something I would want pumped into my body!

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