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When to Consider Arthroscopic Surgery for Hand & Wrist Pain

When to Consider Arthroscopic Surgery for Hand & Wrist Pain

Your hands and wrists are crucial to your everyday activities, of course, so when you’re in pain, it makes life more difficult. Various problems affect your hands and wrists, some of which don't improve with home treatments.

If you're unsure what's causing your hand or wrist pain, the team at Peninsula Orthopedic Associates provides joint arthroscopy for a quick and efficient diagnosis.

Our team has 10 experienced orthopedic specialists who provide you with cutting-edge diagnostic tools and customized treatments to get your pain under control for good.

Causes of hand and wrist pain

Pain in your hand or wrist can have many causes, some acute and others chronic. For instance, an injury such as a fracture causes intense pain. At the same time, degenerative conditions come on more slowly and range in severity.


There are a few common culprits when it comes to pain in your hands and wrists. Some of the more common reasons you could have pain in these areas include:

Broken bones are another cause of pain, especially in your fingers and wrists. We use specialized imaging studies to figure out what's behind your pain and to formulate a personalized treatment plan.

What is a wrist arthroscopy?

An arthroscopy is a minimally invasive surgical procedure on joints like your knees, hips, shoulders, and wrists. We use an arthroscope, a long, thin tube with a camera at the tip.

During the arthroscopy, we make two or three tiny incisions in your wrist joint and insert the arthroscope. The scope connects to an operating room screen, allowing us to see inside your joint.

Once the scope is in your joint, we can see any issues that may be causing pain within your joint. We diagnose the problem and fix anything we can during the procedure via small arthroscopic instruments.

Sometimes, we can't fix the damage in your wrist or hand using minimally invasive measures. If this happens, we open up the joint to properly fix the problem and eliminate your pain.

When do you need a wrist arthroscopy?

A wrist arthroscopy is a surgical procedure requiring anesthesia, so it's rarely a first-line treatment. However, there are some circumstances where you should consider a wrist arthroscopy, including:

Unidentified wrist pain

Sometimes, we're unable to diagnose your pain with imaging studies alone. To get a proper diagnosis and treatment, you may require a wrist arthroscopy for wrist or hand pain that your MRI or X-ray couldn’t explain.

You might also consider a wrist arthroscopy when conservative treatments haven't eliminated your pain.


When you suffer a wrist fracture, we may suggest an arthroscopy to retrieve any loose pieces of bone that are in your joint. It's also helpful to see any other damage in your joint during the fracture.

Torn ligaments

The ligaments in your wrist connect your bones and stabilize your wrist. If you tear these ligaments, an arthroscopy allows us to repair them using minimally invasive measures instead of open surgery.

TFCC tear

The triangular fibrocartilage complex (TFCC) located in your wrist can be injured and cause intense pain. We use arthroscopic technology to repair the TFCC tear and reduce your hand and wrist pain.

We also perform carpal tunnel release using arthroscopic technology. Typically, we use conservative approaches to treat your symptoms first; if these measures fail, an arthroscopy may be the next step in controlling your pain.

To find out if a wrist arthroscopy is the next step for your pain, don't hesitate to call our office in Daly City, California, today for a consultation or book online on our website.

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