Hand therapy provides treatment strategies to reduce symptoms and the impact of arthritis on your daily life.
Osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis are common types of arthritis seen in the hand and wrist. Osteoarthritis often affects the thumb and the small finger joints (DIPs, PIPs) and rheumatoid arthritis can affect the wrist and knuckles of the hand (MCPs). Conditions such as gout and psoriatic arthritis can also present in the hand. Arthritis can cause pain, stiffness, weakness and deformity that can make it hard to continue with normal activity.
The treatment for arthritis focuses on education and self management. Hand therapy provides joint protection education, specific exercises and supports that can all help make activity more achievable and sleep more comfortable. Your doctor can ensure optimal medical management and a referral to a specialist can be made if appropriate. Surgery for arthritis in the hand can be very effective and hand therapists work closely with the surgeon to ensure optimal recovery.