Trigger Finger

“Dr. Julka has been the best surgeon by far"

“I have had four trigger finger release surgeries with four different physicians. Dr. Julka has been the best surgeon by far. The incision was minimally invasive with the result of one stitch to close the surgery site. The discomfort post-op was also minimal and I was able to return to work in less than a week. He has an excellent bedside manner as well.  I highly recommend Dr. Julka as a physician and surgeon.”

~ Sarah  from Google Reviews

Trigger Finger Release

What is the trigger finger?

Trigger finger is a condition in which a or several of your flexor tendons (the tendon on the palm side of your hand) will get caught in the tunnel it traverses to get to your finger tip.  The flexor tendon originated from muscles in your forearm, passes through your carpal tunnel then proceeds through a tunnel or flexor tendon sheath to get to the finger where it has its effect. If inflammation is present around the tendon it may not fit properly through this tunnel. This results in the typical symptoms of trigger finger described below. 

What are the symptoms of trigger finger?

The key symptoms of classic trigger finger is locking of the finger when trying to make a fist. The finger will often be stuck in the palm and release with a painful snapping sensation. Patient often describe a sense of the finger dislocating or popping out of the joint. Patients will have a sense of stiffness and weakness in the hand.  The symptoms are usually worst in the mornings with mild improvement with daily activity. In some cases trigger finger results in finger stiffness alone with no snapping. In rare cases the finger can even become locked in a bent position. 

How is trigger finger diagnosed?

The good news about trigger finger is that it is easily diagnosed with a through hand examination and history. No special tests such as Xrays, Ultrasounds or MRIs are required for the diagnosis.

How is trigger finger treated?

Trigger finger can be treated with non operative measures as well as surgical treatment.  Mild disease is often treated with braces and/or a cortisone injection which is performed at the time of your visit. More severe disease or symptoms that fail to respond to non operative measures is treated with surgery. 

Will my surgery be minimally invasive?

Dr. Julka has been a sought out leader in minimally invasive approach to hand, wrist and elbow surgery. His technique for minimally invasive trigger finger release has been published in peer reviewed journals and viewed internationally.   Dr. Julka performs trigger finger release with a 5mm incision in the palm which is closed with skin glue allowing a generally quicker recovery as well no formal hand therapy. 

What kind of anesthesia is required?

The vast majority of our trigger finger release surgeries are performed with numbing of the hand with a local anesthetic.  Some patients wish to avoid further anesthesia while others prefer to have some mild sedation. Myself and our anesthesiology staff value your preference and allow you to choose between the two options to optimize your experience. 

Do I have to stay overnight in the hospital?

All of our trigger finger release surgeries are performed in a surgery center on an outpatient basis. 

What can I do after my surgery?

You will be placed in a small soft bandage after your surgery. Unless instructed otherwise you will be allowed to remove your bandage in 48 hours and place a band aid over the incision.  At this time you may use the hand for light activities, shower, and perform exercises gently on your own at home. 

When can I get back to my normal activities?

After trigger finger release surgery we will release you back to your regular activities at 4-6 weeks.  Patients who perform activities such as yoga, pushups or other activities that result on significant weight bearing through the hand may have to alter their activities till 8 weeks or more.  

How do I know if I need to seek treatment?

We recommend you seek treatment as soon as you notice symptoms that are interfering with your quality of life. In our experience we have had better success with non operative treatments such as cortisone injections when patients are seen early in their condition.