Arthritis in hands?

iVillage Member
Registered: 08-13-2012
Arthritis in hands?
Mon, 02-11-2013 - 10:52am

Hi. I think I may have arthritis in my hands and wondered how the doc would be able to tell and what can be done about it. I've been dealing with achey hands for a long time now but it seems like they ache constantly especially around the tips of my fingers and it just gets worse all the time. I take Ibuprofen at night to help me sleep but am afraid to take too much. I have an appointment with my primary care physician in two weeks to get my hands looked at and wondered what I should expect. Thank you for your help.

iVillage Member
Registered: 08-16-2001
Tue, 02-19-2013 - 3:50pm

Hi turkeyplease :)

Seeing your primary care physician is a good place to start.  Most likely he or she will take a medical history, examine your hands and, most likely, order some x-rays to determine if there is any joint damage.  Depending on what your PCP decides, he or she may refer you to a rheumatologist.  There can be causes of achy hands aside from arthritis, such as tendinitis, carpal tunnel, bursitis.  A cause will need to be determined before appropriate treatment is recommended.  Some things to do in the interim is to soak your hands in warm water, purchase a microwaveable rice or gel pack and use it on your hands, flex your fingers and wrists gently to keep them as limber as possible.  Probably moving them is not on top of your list of things to do, but gentle exercise can actually reduce the pain and stiffness.  You can also squeeze a soft spongy ball.

Please let us know what your PCP has to say and then we can discuss things further.  Hope to talk to you soon.  :)

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iVillage Member
Registered: 09-02-2008
Tue, 02-12-2013 - 2:48pm

Hi, I'm sorry to hear you are having problems with your hands. I was too so I scheduled and appointment and my doctor xrayed my hands and did some bloodwork to check for arthritis. He says I have carpal tunnel syndrome but I don't really type a lot so I'm not sure what is going on with that.

Good luck and I hope you find some relief.