Help with my hands

On October 12, I had emergency gall bladder removal surgery (thank God, the surgeon was able to do it laparoscopically). Rheumy says no Humira until two weeks after (or October 26), which means I went over a month without injecting Humira. I’m not on any DMARDs.

Injected Humira on October 25. Despite that, now I’m having trouble with my hands, specifically both thumbs and from the first knuckle to the second of both middle fingers.

I’ve soaked in hot Epsom salts water, I’m on a steroid flare but OUCH!

Do those of you who have hand involvement have any other suggestions? If it’s no better by Monday, I’m calling for an appointment. It’s probably time to have at least a baseline set of hand x-rays anyway.

Oh–another one who agrees with Lamb: TAKE YOUR MEDS! I’m facing an MRI of my right shoulder, in part because it took so long to get me diagnosed and in treatment–this is on top of a left arm/shoulder which don’t function normally because of same. TAKE YOUR MEDS!

Sixcaaaaaaat! Oh no … what a bummer. Like you say, though, a “keyhole” surgery is much better than the alternative (which accounts for my 8" midline zipper). My gall bladder surgery put paid to my bikini days. (Snort … as if!)

Stopping the bio isn’t fun, is it? Stoney has just gone through that, as a matter of fact, because she had surgery on her hand involvement. I’ll invite her to this convo using the “invite” icon below. That is a VERY cool feature of Discourse.

You’re right about taking your meds, and of course, tntlamb will most likely chime in and reinforce that message. That’s our mantra here, isn’t it? "Fear the disease, not the meds!"

Sorry about the gall bladder but glad you got through it OK! I had stiff, painful hands/fingers and a couple swollen fingers before I started Enbrel. And, unfortunately, I never found much relief! Ice or heat didn’t help. So, the reason I’m chiming in is I’d also like to hear from anyone who has found some treatments that work for painful hands!

When my hands as a whole have been bad, I’ve definitely preferred heat over ice, but that’s because I also have Raynaud’s so I’m super cautious with ice on my hands and feet. I’ll be nearly a month without Enbrel when all is said and done. I’m back on my NSAIDs temporarily to deal with the minor flare. I hate the feeling that I’m sick when I’m off the biologic.

After I woke up and my left hand was not working and Paul literally had to dress me, I saw the rheumatology nurse practitioner this morning.

Massive flare centered in my hands only; massive case of tendinitis also centered in hands only. All thanks to my overheated immune system, surgery three weeks ago, being off Humira for a month and only one dose since surgery.

What I was doing was not going to get me “over the hump,” so I got two shots either side of ring finger (Lidocaine and steroid) in lefty hand and one (Lidocaine and steroid) in the tendon below righty thumb.

I’m still ouchy and will be for a while.Lefty is actually moving now.

God, I love this disease.

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That’s great that you were able to be seen and have this addressed right away.

I love it too. Never a dull moment. Think of how bored we would be if we didn’t have a PsA hobby.


Wow, Seenie! What a positive attitude you have!!! Sixcat–so sorry to hear of your painful hands. Glad your husband helps you! I hope the inflammation settles down soon.

Are ya nutz? I have a lousy attitude: that was dripping with sarcasm. LOL No, not really. One of the blessings I count is that I have PsA, as wretched a disease as it is, at a time when there is social media. My disease has “introduced” me to some of the most wonderful people I know: fellow sufferers have become friends who share a very special understanding of life with PsA. Because, face it, it’s not only about coping the disease, it’s about coping with life at the same time.
Finding has enriched my life beyond belief. My life would have included PsA anyway. I am just so glad that I have you and you and you…
All of you.

I’m just grateful my hands remain flexible enough to fold in the–do it with me–thumb, index, ring and pinkie fingers leaving only…yes that one. I hold it up gleefully at this disease! Won’t you join me??

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Count me in.

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Waves hands madly.

I’m now (finally and again) flexible enough that I can fly the fickle finger of fate on both hands. Paul cheered the other day when he saw me proudly flying.


It’s all about the small stuff! It’s so good to hear this, 6CL.

from a practical standpoint this old school treatment:
Has done a lot for my hands. not so many years ago it was about all that was abvailable. I use it for my feet as well

our wax bath is plugged in year round. it does help when there’s a lot of pain and stiffness.

That’s going on my Christmas list!!!

I’m sure Santa has those in stock.

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I had paraffin on my feet yesterday as part of a pedicure. It felt sooo good. But TNT, how can that 15 minutes in paraffin make a difference? Heat you say? Why not hot water or a heating pad?

It the penetration and oils as well as the moisture and maybe it just feels better which isn’t a bad thing. paraffin is used at 50o C ( 122 F) and the heat trapped in because of the layers. A heating pad is pretty inefficient unless wrapped in a towel and the temps are way different : Lo: 110°F Medium: 138°F Hi: 160°F It really gets to the connective tissue… .

Believe it or not the whole thing was pretty extensivley studied back in the 50’s in this study (Are you surprised I still have it?)

It did make a difference even in the progression of RA (not a lot but some) after six weeks of treatment. There was a more recent study done as well I can’t find it, but it is referenced here Its one old school therapy that has peresevered and is pretty common in PTs around here unless they can get you to pay for ultrasonic heating…

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Why two weeks