Orthopaedics

Swollen Finger Joints

Joint is defined as a place where two bones join. Every finger excluding thumb has three joints. Swollen finger joints may disrupt the functionality of hand and is also a painful condition. Briefly, swollen joints in finger can interfere with the daily chores. Daily activities such as handshake or holding a brush may cause severe pain. Fluid retention is the main cause of swollen finger joints.

Swollen Finger Joints – Causes

Following are some factors that cause inflammation in the finger joints:

Excess Use

Overuse of hand can be detrimental to joints. Pain in the finger joint is the most common problem in manual laborers. Excessive work causes more strain on fingers, resulting in swollen in finger joints.

Injury

A hand injury which afflicts the finger joints may cause swelling. Injuries to the joints which involve the hand is very common in athletes. A hand surgeon may fix the joint if there is a severe injury.

Rheumatoid Arthritis

This often affects fingers and is the major cause of swelling in finger joints. Arthritis is a condition which triggers painful joint inflammation. However, in rheumatoid arthritis case, swelling is not restricted to joints, it may spread to the nearby tissues too. The muscles, ligaments and tendons which hold joint in proper position may also get damaged. Hence, joints become stiff and it is difficult to move fingers in this situation. If proper treatment is not taken, joint deformity may occur which gradually damages the bone structure.

Joint Infection

Swelling in finger joints can be a symptom of an infection. If the joint is infected by a fungus, virus or bacteria, fluid accumulates in the joint and results in swelling. Often, an infection in some body part can move to any joint and cause inflammation. Treatment must be given immediately to reduce swelling.

Bone Fracture

A fracture because of a trauma, like falling of heavy objects on fingers may cause joint swelling. The swollen joint can cause great discomfort and treating the bone may give relief from pain.

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