Monday, May 23, 2022

How Long Does Sprained Wrist Pain Last

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Common Symptoms Of Wrist Sprains

Common symptoms of wrist sprains include one or more of the following:

  • Pain. Pain in a sprained wrist may vary from an intermittent dull ache to a sharp constant pain. The pain usually subsides after a few days, however, activities such as gripping or lifting with the hand may be painful until complete healing occurs. Hand twisting activities, such as opening a jar or doorknob may also be painful.
  • Swelling. The wrist may appear swollen. Swelling may occur due to collection of fluid in the joint and tissue spaces of the injured area. The amount of swelling usually depends on the severity of the sprain.
  • Stiffness and reduced flexibility. Stiffness in the wrist joint may be caused due to swelling and/or muscle spasms in response to the ligament injury. Decreased motion, especially while bending the wrist backward and during side-to-side movements may be experienced. Flexibility should improve gradually over time.
  • Joint weakness. Reduced grip and pinch strength with a general feeling of weakness in the sprained wrist may occur in moderate to severe wrist sprains. This symptom may be exacerbated by activities requiring pushing with the hand.

The duration of symptoms usually depends on the type and severity of the wrist sprain. While some sprains usually heal in a few days, others may take weeks or months.

Treatment For A Sprained Wrist

Treatment will depend on the severity of the injury. First degree sprains can follow sports injury treatment using the P.R.I.C.E. principle  Protection, Rest, , Compression, Elevation for the first 48 hours. Depending on the size of the athlete, can be used to provide initial support for the wrist until the pain diminishes.

Athletes with suspected second or third degree sprains should be immediately immobilized with a and then placed in a to immobilize the elbow and referred for medical evaluation.

Once a fracture/dislocation has been ruled out and a sprained wrist has been diagnosed, the goals of the initial rehabilitation period are to reduce pain and swelling. This can be accomplished utilizing the P.R.I.C.E. principles of initial treatment.

To assist in the healing process, the wrist should be immobilized either with an or a brace. This immobilization allows the ligaments to begin to heal. If movement of the wrist occurs too soon , the new tissue that the body produces to mend the ligament can be disrupted and the healing process delayed.

As pain decreases, pain-free gentle range-of motion exercises can be started moving the wrist through flexion, extension, and side-to-side movements. These should be performed slowly by the athlete. The athlete can gradually increase the range of the motion over time.


Continue The Observation After The Recovery:

In most cases, a sprained joint is a one-time event. However, after sustaining an initial injury, you may be a higher risk for re-injury if proper precautions are not taken. This is especially true for athletes or active people who exercise regularly and push their bodies to the limit.

How to Avoid Getting Sprains

  • Run on flat surfaces
  • Wear protective gear while playing sports
  • Eat healthy food to keep muscles strong
  • Maintain a healthy weight according to your physician
  • Exercise daily
  • Make sure you have the right physical condition for the sport you are playing
  • Wear proper-fitting shoes

Treatment For A Wrist Sprain

If you want more information on wrist sprain treatment then get your symptoms assessed first with our pain assessment tool.

Once youve identified the likely cause youll be able to download a treatment guide. It will tell you everything you need to know to treat the condition, manage the pain effectively and help prevent re-injury.

How Is A Wrist Sprain Diagnosed

Painful Wrist

For an accurate diagnosis of a wrist sprain, the primary care doctor must obtain a detailed medical history, and occupational or work history on the patient. It is very important that the doctor rule out confounding diagnosis since wrist sprain shares similar symptoms with other hand injuries. The doctor will perform a physical examination of the hand and the surrounding areas. 

The doctor may recommend imaging tests to improve diagnosis. MRI scan and CT scan aided by an arthrogram, a special dye that can be injected into the wrist joint to assess ligament tears, can be used to obtain accurate pictures of the wrist and ligaments. X-ray imaging will show bone fractures and wrist bones alignment. Although x-ray will not show the ligaments, it can be used to rule out other diagnoses. 

After evaluating the hand and reviewing symptoms, the doctor will determine if the patients can continue treatment in an urgent care facility or be referred to a hand surgeon or specialist for further treatment. 

What Is A Wrist Sprain

The wrist is a joint that comprises the carpal bones. There are eight carpal bones in the wrist and these bones are arranged in two rows. The proximal wrist bones articulate with the and , while the distal carpal bones connect with the metacarpals. In total, the wrist joint links fifteen separate bones. 

The bones of the wrist are held together by cartilage and ligaments these are dense fibrous connective tissues. Articular cartilage and ligaments allow the bones of the wrist to slide along each other while in a proper position. These provide stability to the joint and also aid movement of the wrist. 

The hand is of constant use for various activities. A wrist sprain can occur when the ligaments that stabilize the wrist bones become stretched beyond their normal elastic limit. In severe cases, the ligament can be partially or completely torn.

Recovering From A Sprained Wrist

Understanding how to care for a sprained wrist ligament is the first and most important step toward a complete recovery. As long as you understand the cause of your injury, seeking the appropriate treatment should be straightforward. Now that you know how to heal a sprained wrist, soon you will be cooking, golfing, driving, and hugging those close to you again.

Do I Have A Broken Or Sprained Wrist

How does a broken or sprained wrist happen? Rushing around, trying to do too many things at once, we have tripped and fallen. Usually its fine. We brush ourselves off and keep going. However, the first thing we usually do when we fall is try to catch ourselves by putting our hands out. Our wrists are not meant to take that kind of impact, though, and often the force of a fall can cause damage to wrists.

Wrist pain caused by a fall might be serious or it might not. How do we know if we have a broken or sprained wrist? Sometimes it is hard to tell.

In todays post, I would like to discuss wrist fractures by clarifying what a wrist fracture is, how to differentiate between a fracture and a sprain, and explain how they are treated.

Sprained Wrist Symptoms Spraining Your Wrist Is A Painful Experience That May Cause The Injured Area To Become Swollen Such As Turning The Doorknob Ice I Sprained My Right Wrist Decreased Range Of Motion And Over

In most cases, The most common ligament injured in the wrist is the scapho-lunate ligament, These injuries may take from two to 10 weeks to heal, consistent pain right around the injured area and with finger movement, Ignoring continued pain can lead to severe issues, there is still pain if I try doing anything with it, In more severe sprains, tenderness, will heal in two to three days,Treatments, This is true of all orthopedic injuries, whereas moderate wrist sprains heal in a week.

What Can You Do To Help Prevent Wrist Hyperextension Injuries

This may seem like an unnecessary point to make because most wrist hyperextension injuries occur by accident, but there are actually a lot of things you can to keep your wrists generally safe from sprains and injuries.

 Learn the correct way to fall to avoid wrist injuries

  • When you fall, your natural instinct is to put your hands out in the easiest direction to catch yourself, but this can often lead to a sprained wrist. 
  • Instead, try to tuck your arms close to your body and begin to roll if you start fallingthis will cause you to land on the most padded part of your body while keeping your wrists and head safe.
  • Its especially important to learn how to fall safely if youre playing sports where youre more likely to tumble to the ground often.

Always walk carefully

  • Avoid rushing anywhere unless you absolutely have to. If you walk slowly, you have more control over your feet and will be less likely to fall.
  • Focus on your steps when walking through ice/snow, on a wet bathroom floor, or on uneven ground. 
  • Wear shoes with non-slip soles to avoid falling.

Use two hands to lift objects that are heavy

Wear protective gear when playing sports or exercising

Put most of your weight on your fingers when balancing on your hands

Add wrist-strengthening exercises to your daily training regimen or gym routine


For advice on how you can effectively stretch and strengthen your wrists, please have a look at the video below:


How To Prevent A Broken Or Sprained Wrist

My best advice–try not to fall! This may seem common sense, but many times the cause is preventable. Loose rugs, items on the floor, unsafe ladder use, all are preventable common causes of falls. As much as we love our pets, we must also be careful with them around our feet as well.

Second to that, there are a few things you can do to prevent a wrist injury should you fall.

  • Be proactive and build bone strength with a diet containing sufficient calcium and vitamin D and doing weight-bearing exercises
  • Wear protective gear for sports activities, especially skateboarding and rollerblading
  • Take care when walking on slippery or bumpy surfaces

Diagnosis Of A Sprained Wrist

Doctors diagnose a wrist sprain based on how the injury occurred. For example, you may be asked to describe the position of your wrist during a fall. A coach or trainers eyewitness account may help make a diagnosis of a sprained wrist in a sportsperson. Also, the doctor will ask you about your history of previous wrist injuries. He or she will also perform a physical examination. During the exam, the doctor will check for wrist stability and grip strength.

Depending on your history, exam, and symptoms, yourdoctor may recommend getting an X-ray to rule out a wrist fracture. If the X-ray is normal but your symptoms do not go away, more detailed imaging with MRI or CT scan may be necessary.

What Are The Symptoms Of A Sprained Thumb

How to tell if you sprained your wrist

When you sprain your thumb, youll usually feel pain, discomfort, and stiffness at the base of your thumb near the palm. You may have trouble grabbing or pinching objects, or barely be able to move your thumb.

Youll also see swelling and bruising around the base of your thumb. The pain and swelling usually fades after a few weeks if you rest your thumb and use ice to reduce swelling. Learn more about using cold therapy to ease inflammation and swelling.

Treatment For Hyperextended Wrist Injury

The good news is that minor to moderate wrist hyperextension injuries can heal on their own with time, adequate rest, and care. You can speed up your healing process by using the RICE Method and doing the following:

  • Rest: Avoid all aggravating activities for at least 48 hours or till the pain disappears to ensure you dont worsen the damage thats already done
  • Ice: the affected area.Apply an ice pack on your wrist for 20 to 30 minutes every 3 to 4 hours until the pain and swelling subside
  • Compress the injured wrist using gauze or a bandage to immobilize it and prevent it from moving.
  • Elevate: the wrist above the level of the heart during rest or as frequently as possible to stimulate blood flow and reduce inflammation
  • Tryover-the-counter anti-inflammatoriesor pain-killers such as ibuprofen to reduce pain and swelling
  • Protect your injured wrist from further injury. This could mean using bandages, n over-the-counter wrist supports, orKinesio tape to keep the wrist safe.

If these do not work and you are still struggling with pain and loss of function, please consult yourphysiotherapist. He/she will make use of various physiotherapy techniques such as ultrasound and prescribe a wrist brace for your injury should you need one. 

Your physiotherapist will then teach you some light stretches and exercises, and advance them as you heal to: 

  • Eliminate pain
  • Improve your wrist muscle strength
  • Improve your wrist range of motion 
  • Improve your wrists ability to grip things and push


Getting A Second Opinion

A second opinion should be considered when deciding on a high-risk procedure like surgery or you want another opinion on your treatment options.  It will also provide you with peace of mind.  Multiple studies make a case for getting additional medical opinions.

In 2017, a Mayo Clinic study showed that 21% of patients who sought a second opinion left with a completely new diagnosis, and 66% were deemed partly correct, but refined or redefined by the second doctor.

You can ask your primary care doctor for another doctor to consider for a second opinion or ask your family and friends for suggestions.  Another option is to use a Telemedicine Second Opinion service from a local health center or a Virtual Care Service.


Why Does My Sprain Take So Long To Heal

Maybe you are a weekend warrior, or maybe you were just walking down the street. It only takes a misstep, and you have a sprain. It is one of the most common musculoskeletal injuries for people of all ages and physical conditions. Without an x-ray, it can be hard to tell whether you have a fracture or a sprain, so you should seek medical treatment after you have been injured.

Diagnostic Tests For Hand Sprains And Strains

Your NYU Langone doctor performs a physical examination, moving the hand to check for sensitivity and discomfort and to determine whether your range of motion is impaired. Your doctor may ask questions about your ability to perform tasks that involve the affected hand, your symptoms, and any prior hand injuries.

One or more of the following tests may also be recommended.

Treatment Options For Ankle Sprains

At the Centeno-Schultz Clinic, treatment options for ankle injuries include PRP and stem cells.  PRP is rich in growth factors that can improve blood flow and accelerated healing.  There are three important phases of ligament healing which include acute inflammation, proliferative, and tissue remodeling. Each phase occurs over different time periods. To learn more about how ligaments respond to PRP and stem cell injections, please click on the video below.

What To Do When You Suffer A Sprain

We have all suffered sprains or ankle cramps at some point in our lives. Its a condition that, although painful, is also easily treatable. However, we often ignore the first and most important stage of treatment, which can actually be the key to long-term recovery. For most of us, this is because we are unaware or uninformed about sprains, their treatment, and the proper recovery process.

  • What is a sprain?
  • How should you treat a sprain?
  • What causes an ankle or wrist sprain?

So many questions, so little time. No worries, however. We have everything you need to know about sprains covered below.Read on to find out about what we refer to as the sprained truth.

When Will I Need Surgery For Ligament Damage In Wrist

As mentioned above, if the X-rays and MRI are unable to provide enough information about the injury, anarthroscopy is needed. This involves surgically inserting a camera into the wrist to examine the injury thoroughly so it can be treated appropriately. 

Based on what is found during the arthroscopy, surgery may include:

  • Debridement: the tissues around the wrist may have sustained significant trauma and will need to be debrided .
  • Ligament Repair: by tightening up the capsule tissue on the back of the wrist. This could require the use of pins to hold the ligament repair in place. 
  • Reduction of a Fracture or Dislocation: the damage is reduced by placing the bones correctly and using pins to hold them in place.


In the case of Ligament Repair and Fracture/Dislocation Reduction surgeries, a cast will be applied to your wrist to keep the pins in place while you heal. Your surgeon will remove the pins anywhere from 8-12 weeks or when the injury has deemed to have healed completely. 

After this, you will need to consult your physiotherapist so that strengthening and range of motion exercises can begin .


Grade 3 Sprained Wrist

What To Do When You Sprained Your Wrist?

This is the most serious type of wrist sprain. The ligaments have completely torn. In some cases, the ligament might separate from the bone.

If you have a grade 3 wrist sprain, you may need surgery.

Like a wrist sprain, a wrist break is often caused by a fall. Its also called a wrist . The injury involves the bone. It happens when one or several bones in your wrist crack or break.

Common symptoms of a broken wrist include:

  • severe pain, especially when moving your hand
  • swelling

A doctor can diagnose a wrist sprain by using different tests. This lets them rule out other injuries, like a wrist break or strain.

Possible tests include:

  • Physical examination. At your initial appointment, a doctor will look for swelling, tenderness, and bruising. Theyll assess your mobility.
  • MRI or CT scan.MRI and CT scans create images of your ligaments and tendons. A doctor can use them to check the severity of your injury.
  • X-ray. A doctor may order an to confirm your wrist is not broken.

The best treatment plan depends on the severity of your sprain. Most wrist sprains can be treated without surgery.

Is It Possible To Prevent A Sprained Wrist

Most wrist sprains occur due to falls. Minimizing the risk of falls will also minimize the risk of wrist sprain.

  • This includes wearing appropriate shoes and being careful or wet or icy surfaces.
  • Wrist sprains also occur in sport like skateboarding and skiing. Wrist guards or supportive taping may help.

Less Common Symptoms Of Wrist Sprains

The less common symptoms of wrist sprains may include:

  • Bruising. A bruise, also known as contusion, may form on the skin over the wrist due to rupture of blood vessels under the skin and leaking of blood into the tissue spaces. A change in color of the skin varying from red, black, or blue may occur due to bruising. Sometimes, bruising may extend to the fingers.
  • Warmth. A feeling of warmth over the sprained wrist may be present due to increased blood flow to the area.
  • Numbness. Numbness in one or more fingers may be experienced in cases where a wrist bone dislocates and presses on one or more nerves in the wrist.
  • Feeling of tearing. In some moderate to severe wrist sprains, popping or tearing may be felt at the time of injury. The tearing feeling may also occur during wrist movements.
  • Feeling of instability. Instability refers to a consistent click or clunk when moving the wrist. It can feel like the bones are shifting position and may be uncomfortable.

It is also possible for bone fractures, tendon damage, and/or nerve injuries to occur along with wrist sprains. A careful evaluation by a medical professional can help diagnose and treat wrist injuries.

The Difference Between A Broken Or Sprained Wrist

A sprain involves the ligaments that connect the bones at the joint. It can be difficult to tell the difference between a fracture and a sprain. You should not assume that the degree of pain determines the specific problem.

Although it would seem that a sprain would hurt less than a fracture, this is not always the case. Sprains can often be extremely painful, where fractures may sometimes hurt less. There are also different degrees of sprains from mild to severe.

A broken or sprained wrist may have many of the same symptoms:

  • Swelling in your wrist or hand
  • Pain, especially when you move your wrist
  • Difficulty picking up objects
  • Bruising
  • Limited range of motion

However, if youve fractured your wrist, there are a few symptoms that go beyond sprains. There may be a deformity in the wrist and bone pushing against the skin or sometimes puncturing it. When you fall and hurt your wrists, you might hear a snap or pop and your wrist will usually swell immediately and worsen, even when treated with ice.

The best way to know for certain if your wrist is fractured or sprained is to see a hand surgery specialist. They can do a thorough assessment and diagnose what is causing your pain.

“Many wrist fractures do not require surgery, and can be adequately treated in a cast or brace. “Brandon P. Donnelly, MD

Start With Ball Squeezes

The athlete can use either a tennis ball or racquetball. If these are not readily available, a rolled sock works just as well. The athlete places the object in his/her hand and squeezes the object as hard as he/she can without going into pain. This can be performed multiple times throughout the day and early during the rehabilitation process because this exercise can be performed while the athletes wrist is immobilized.


Health Solutions From Our Sponsors

Wrist Pain

  • The most common cause of wrist injuries is a fall on an outstretched hand.
  • Wrist pain from repetitive use that results in inflammation of the tendons . This is termed a repetitive motion injury and is not a true sprain.
  • Carpal tunnel syndrome is another common wrist injury that may occur from repetitive motion.

When Should You Seek Medical Attention

If the acute wrist trauma is accompanied by any of the following, it is a medical emergency and you should seek medical attention immediately :

  • Bone or joint that is clearly deformed or broken
  • Severe pain and/or swelling
  • Disorientation or confusion
  • Paralysis, tingling, or numbness

Now on a lighter note, if the injury gives you mild pain and tenderness at the wrist, it is most likely a Grade 1 injury. These are fairly easy to manage with at-home techniques including the R.I.C.E. Method, over-the-counter anti-inflammatories, and preventing the wrist from any further injury. After a few days, you can return to normal activity with usually little to no pain . 

However, if the injury is a Grade 2 sprain, i.e. giving you more than a little pain and a moderate  loss of function of your wrist, then you will need to seek medical attention immediately. 

Lets say, for instance, you may not recall the fall or mechanism of injury but find that youre developing pain at your wrist thats getting progressively worse over time. You may find pain in the center or on the thumb side of the wrist, especially with activities such as push-ups, or other activities that load the wrist; and a decrease of function and grip strength. This could mean you have indeed sustained a wrist sprain .

Therefore getting an opinion from your doctor or physiotherapist is great in any case to give you peace of mind and to avoid potentially long-lasting effects from the injury that could have been avoided. 


What Can Cause A Sprained Thumb

Your thumb gets sprained when a ligament gets injured or stretched beyond its normal range of motion.

A thumb sprain can be caused when you hit your thumb forcefully against a hard surface or bend your thumb too far in one direction. Trying to soften a fall with your outstretched hand and hitting your thumb on the ground is the most common cause of a thumb sprain.

Sprained thumbs are also common in sports that require you to use your hands, such as football, volleyball, rugby, or basketball. Read about how minor sports injuries can be treated at home.

The ulnar collateral ligament is the most common ligament involved in a thumb sprain. This ligament is at the base of your thumb near your palm at the metacarpophalangeal joint . It keeps your thumb from bending too far or dislocating.

A sprained thumb is sometimes called skiers thumb because you can easily injure your thumbs UCL if you hit your thumb at high speeds against a skiing pole. Its also sometimes called gamekeepers thumb because of how common a chronic UCL sprain is among gamekeepers. These people frequently use their thumbs and index fingers to break the necks of small animals, which weakens or sprains the UCL over time.

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