Carpul Tunnel and Little finger curling up?

Carpul Tunnel and Little finger curling up?

Hi everyone,

Ive known for a while I have carpul tunnel syndrome, however Ive been leaving it to see if I really need the op. Ive managed 18 months fine untill recently when my sleep started to become disturbed due to waking with hand cramps and pain.

However this week something new has been happening, Ive been getting loads of pain in pinkie finger and it keeps curling up like in the photo.

Has anybody else had anything else like this please advise?


10 Replies

is that your hand? I have had a phase when either some of my fingers or all of my hand curled up in a kind of cramp. Could it be to do with tendons inflamed or something. Lyn may know? It went off with high steroids as mysteriously as it arrived. The pain is v painful if its the same thing as me. Some of the others have mentioned it so Im beginning to think this must be part of how RA manifests in the hands?


Hi Julie

This sounds as though it may be trigger finger (stenosing tenosynovitis). The finger joint does not operate as smoothly as it should and often locks in a closed position. It's caused by inflammation or tightening of the tendon or tendon sheath which stops the free movement around the tendons that normally pull the affected digit inward toward the palm. Night splinting can help because it keeps the fingers straight and in the correct position whilst sleeping and avoids the impromptu use of the tendons. Wax baths are also useful and if used twice daily will help to keep the finger joints mobile.

Sometimes cortisone injections can be given around the tendon; this is quite an effective treatment. Damage to hands can quickly become permanent and deforming so I think if you have real concerns it is worth seeking medical advice if it doesn't settle down quickly.

Hope it improves soon ... additional worries we don't need!

Lyn x


Hi Julie, I've had episodes of trigger finger which have arrived and departed mysteriously - it responded to an increase in my DMARD and splinting. Defo mention it to your rheumy consultant (the photo is an excellent idea!) as you may be able to delay / head it off with some tweaks to your meds. Have you got a rheumy nurse specialist/ nurse helpline? They're really helpful and can move your next appt forward if necessary, also OT's are v inventive with splinting!

Enjoy the sunshine - and if it's not shining on you then I will beam some over in your direction:-)

Cece x


yep think its trigger finger too... best see if you can get referred for surgery

looked into dragon soft ware.. but isd bout £65 squid which is beyond budget at moment


Hi no its not my hand, I didnt have my camera with me at the time, I will take a photo soon and upload to show you.

I am already on a high dose of steriods (moon face to prove it!)

This is something I found when looking up my syptoms:

seems to be ulnar nerve or something. I dont think its the trigger finger as I do already suffer with that in my right hand with my thumb and trigger finger, but they are the oposite and dont bend or move at all and I am having problems trying to keep my left little finger straight its clawed. Many times my fingers have clawed after sleeping however this isnt going away.

I wear night splints, however this occured after an afternoon nap in the chair.

I use my wax bath twice a day and couldnt get through a day without it. I know about the damage to hands being quick and unrepairable as my right fingers cant be repaired unless I have surgery for new finger joints but my rheumy said because its the trigger finger and most used finger new joints dont always last long.

I am going to phone my rheumy today and get it checked out.

I dont have a rheumy/nurse helpline Cece I normally just end up passing messages between there secretarys, not ideal but the only way I can get any info or help.

The sun has been fantastic and Ive loved every minute of todays :)

Sorry the software's to expensive for you Alison, maybe look online see if you can find a cheaper alternative to dragon.

Dont fancy surgery! :(



I've just had my carpal tunnel opped on I also have ulnar nerve probs as well, and how did you get that photo of my hand. When they operated last week the thought was if they reduced the swelling within the carpal tunnel it may may may give enough relief.

I too have had night cramps in my hand and my fingers curl all the time I've developed my own way of typing now. I have been given a glove for my left hand which is amazing as it sort of massages, without batteries!!! and helps the swelling go down, I'm hoping to have one for my right hand when it's healed. I go tomorrow to see a new Rheumy nurse, she is hopefully going to say the scar is healed enough to have steroid jab. Julie it sounds very much like you have same as me, but you are worse because of the damage that has happened to you in the past. I think I'm extremely lucky to be given the treatment that has come my way.

Best wishes if you not sure what I've meant bout ulnar and carpal together send me email message.



I had a similar problem back in 2007 , I wore night splints and took paracetamol to ease the problem ,this used to work to some degree for a while but things slowly became worse so I had a word with my rheumatologis who refered my to the surgeon who had done other ops for me in the past, he took one look and advised a small op to release the tendons. This op takes aprox. 5/10 mins

the pressure is releaved and with a bit of careful excercise over the following weeks you should regain the use of your hand in full. ( try making out you are playing the piano, also touch each of your fingers with your thumb in turn,say 5 times every hour until the mobility is back) Good luck.


Hi Julie, fingers and wrists one of the worst hit with me by the RA. So much fluid around my knuckles too very painful, had some drawn away once but it's so difficult to do and even more painful than other joints retaining fluid.

Had synovectomy operation on both wrists and this helped enormously, not got much bend in them though. Sorry I can't give much advice on the carpul tunnel as not been affected in the same way.

Good luck in getting sorted, take care.

mand xx.


Thanks everyone for your lovely comments I have phoned my OT this morning and she is seeing if she can bring my appointment forward just to get it all checked out.


I have the exact same problem more so in my left hand, my right is slowly starting to go. I have not been diagnosed as to what is causing mine. I have been tested for carpel tunnel and nothing. All my tests came back with nothing except for my nerve in my elbow was compressed. So i had ulnar nerve decompression surgery. After 7 months of recovery from surgery it made no difference. 5 months of physio. And to this day 5 years later im still looking for a answer.


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