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Dealing with Trigger Finger Treatment in Singapore

22nd Jun 2021

When it comes to treating trigger finger, doctors will usually suggest two methods – surgical and non-surgical – depending on the severity of your trigger finger symptoms.

You see, trigger finger is a condition that occurs due to the inflammation of the tendons that flex your fingers, causing you to experience pain and finger tenderness. And when you try to uncurl your fingers, you need to use your other hand to do so. 

This condition limits your finger‘s movement and can make it difficult for you to straighten and bend your finger(s). While the symptoms of the trigger finger tend to be worse in the morning, your finger will begin to relax and move more easily as the day passes.

That said, there are many ways to identify whether you have a trigger finger or other conditions. Let’s discover the symptoms and trigger finger treatments in Singapore.

 What are the symptoms of trigger finger and trigger finger treatment in Singapore? 

The symptoms of trigger finger can vary from person to person and may progress from mild to severe if left untreated. Some of the symptoms include:

 Pain – Discomfort at the base of your affected finger or thumb, where the finger joins the palm. The pain may be present when you perform a certain activity such as gripping or grasping. If there is increased fluid production in the tendon sheath, you may experience pain even without hand use.

 Swelling – A bump or lump around the base of your affected finger. The swelling may occur due to a nodular swelling within the tendon or the development of a fluid-filled cyst.

 Stiffness or loss of motion – When your affected finger is left locked in a bent or straight position, you may experience stiffness or loss of motion over time. This symptom is common in chronic trigger finger as it can be painful to bend or straighten the finger due to the compression of the fluid.

 Mechanical symptoms – Abnormal sensations or movement that are often described as popping, locking, or catching. These symptoms generally occur when you try to bend or straighten your affected finger. Often accompanied by mild pain, the symptoms can progress into severe pain over time. 

Should you experience any of these symptoms, it’s best to seek medical advice soonest you can to prevent your trigger finger from progressing further. That way, you have a range of treatment options to choose from to improve your trigger finger’s range of motion.

What are the treatment options for trigger finger? 

As pointed out earlier, your trigger finger treatment in Singapore options depend on the severity of your symptoms and how long you’ve had them. In some cases, the trigger finger may get better without treatment while some may require a thorough diagnosis and surgery.  

Surgery is only recommended if conservative treatment options like medications, splinting, steroid injections, and physical therapy fail to improve your trigger finger. Also, the efficacy of trigger finger surgery is commended by hand surgeons in treating chronic trigger finger.

The surgical procedure usually takes less than an hour and you’ll be given a local anaesthetic to ensure a smooth, painless surgery. There are 3 types of trigger finger surgery – open surgery, percutaneous release, and tenosynovectomy.

Open trigger finger surgery

This method is highly effective in treating chronic trigger finger. Before this surgery, you’ll be given a local anaesthetic – usually lignocaine – so that you don’t feel any pain during the surgery. Once it takes effect, your surgeon will make a small incision in the palm of your hand. 

After your surgeon makes the incision, he/she will locate the tendon sheath and carefully cut the pulley to make more space for the tendon. Before closing your wound with stitches, your surgeon may flex and extend your affected finger to ensure that the tendon can move freely. 

This technique is simple to do and many patients have instantaneous gratification from seeing their fingers move so freely compared to the many years of restricted movement and clicking.

The percutaneous trigger finger release

This surgery is performed by inserting a needle through your affected finger’s skin to treat the affected tendon sheath tissue. Most physicians will use a 16- or 18-gauge needle to perform this surgery, so you won’t have a wound or scar after the surgery.  

Similarly, you’ll be given a local anaesthetic to numb your hand. During this surgery, the surgeon carefully guides the needle, with the use of ultrasound imaging, to the affected tendon sheath to avoid any damage to the surrounding tendon or nerves. Because there’s no incision, you won’t be needing any stitches after the procedure. 

This method is seldom utilised as it has a higher failure rate compared to the open techniques, in which the incision made is also quite small


Rarely, your surgeon may recommend this surgery. Only if the first two surgical options are not suitable, especially if you have underlying medical conditions like rheumatoid arthritis or tenosynovitis is this procedure recommended. This procedure is typically performed to restore tendon function in the body as the pathology involves not just the tendon pulley but the surrounding synovium.

Before the surgery, you will likely receive local, general, or regional anaesthetic. During the procedure, your surgeon will open the tendon sheath and examine the injured tendon. This will release constriction, allowing the tendon to move freely. If necessary, your surgeon will remove the surrounding tissue to remove inflammation. 

After any of this surgery, you may experience some pain and soreness around your wound. So make sure to follow your surgeon’s advice in relieving the pain as well as rehabilitation to improve your finger’s range of motion. 

At Spire Orthopaedic Centre, everyone should be cared for and healed holistically in comfort without having to travel to different locations to seek medical and surgical help and rehabilitation support.

With a combined facility for collaboration between physicians, physiotherapists, and surgeons, you will experience a seamless service from diagnosis to treatment and rehabilitation, that’s tailored just for you at our clinic.