The diagnosis for Rhizarthrosis is made by a physical evaluation and based on the patient’s history. An x-ray will then be used to confirm the condition.
The most common symptom of Rhizarthrosis is pain at the base of the thumb. The pain can significantly be aggravated by movements that require pinching and the use of opposing pressure from the thumb, such as opening bottles, practicing racket sports and writing. In a normal, healthy joint, cartilage generally covers the end of the bones and serves as a shock absorber that allow smooth, pain-free movement. Rhizarthrosis of the thumb is the most common form of osteoarthritis of the hand. The cartilage layer wears out, resulting in direct friction between the bones and producing severe discomfort through pain and deformity.
What are the treatment options ?
A mild case of thumb arthritis will commonly respond quite well to non-surgical care. Modern practice generally favors non-invasive techniques as much as possible. Patients with advanced cases of Rhizarthrosis or who have attempted non-surgical treatment without success may be candidates for surgical intervention. Several surgical techniques exist and can significantly reduce or eliminate pain. A consultation with a specialized hand surgeon will help you identify the best options ahead.
The hand is commonly regarded as the most complicated body part when it comes to surgery. This is due to its numerous nerve endings, bone structure and fragility. It is therefore important to make sure you are taken care of by a medical team with extensive experience in hand surgery.
In Geneva, The Centre for Hand and Wrist Surgery offers complete care management of conditions of the hand, the wrist and other parts of the upper limbs.