Sprain / Strain, Wrist (Severe)
A strain is an inflammation to the tendons that connect muscles to the bones and is typically caused by overuse or repetitive use. Tenderness, pain and mild swelling usually occur with a strain. If left untreated the strained tendons can start to pull away from the muscle with slight tearing progressing to tendinitis. The strained muscle area should be rested and allowed to heal. Compressive supports or braces help hold the muscles and tendons in proper position to allow healing to begin and help prevent further tearing. A severe wrist sprain is a complete tearing of a ligament group (versus a tendon) in the wrist or hand as a result of a forceful twist or blow. Pain and swelling are obvious and occur immediately with near complete loss of function. The ligament may be torn with such a force that it actually pulls off a chip from the bone to which it was connected. Immobilization with a wrist splint is required and even casting may be necessary. During the healing process, it may be indicated to progress from a wrist splint to a wrist brace or support as the ligaments grow stronger.