Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Preparing for Trigger Thumb Surgery: Before, During, After

After my initial post on my first daughter's trigger thumb surgery, I received more responses than I had expected.  Now, two and a half years and one more trigger thumb surgery later (on another daughter, not the same one!), I wanted to share the more details about the surgery with those of you who have expressed so much interest.

The Surgery
Trigger thumb release surgery involves an incision being made near the base of the thumb where the bump or nodule on the tendon is.  The surgeon cuts the sheath that the tendon goes through, making it big enough that the enlarged spot on the tendon can easily slide through the sheath to straighten the thumb.  The surgeon sews up the incision and bandages it up either with a hard cast or a soft bandage, depending on preference.  This surgery is a minor one (though when it's your child, it doesn't sound minor), taking only 15-20 minutes per thumb. Though, when you factor in anesthesia, it's more like a 2-3 hour ordeal.  In the end, it's really quite magical, the things that modern medical advances can do!

Hard Cast or Soft Bandage?
I had two daughters that have had bilateral trigger thumb release surgery (surgery to fix both right and left trigger thumbs).  One daughter's Orthopedic surgereon perferred using hard casts while the other perferred using a soft bandage. The reason the one surgeon liked the hard casts: with a cast on for 2-3 weeks, it gives ample time for the incision to heal, and since kids can be pretty rambucious, this can make sense.  The other surgeon's reason for using the soft bandage: with a bandange, it can be removed after two days and the child can go straight to using his/her new thumbs.

Having the rare chance of expeiencing both the hard cast and the soft bandage, I'll share the pros and cons.  If your surgeon gives you the choice, hopefully this can help you make your decision.

Hard Cast
Pros
  • 3 weeks gives wound time to heal, letting the swelling go down and the incision to close up.
  • If you have a very accident prone child, this might be a very safe option, because it wouldn't be fun to break open a freshly stitched up job.
Cons
  • Parents will invest plenty of time helping their child eat, dress, and wipe after up after the bathroom.
  • Getting the cast cut off can be a bit of a traumatic experience for a child. 
  • Child doesn't get to realize the benefits of their new, working thumbs until weeks after the surgery.
  • Bath time is crazy for a few weeks.  Plastic bags on casts...
Soft Bandage
Pros
  • Only needs to be on for a couple of days, so I only had to spoon feed my daughter for a couple of days as opposed to three weeks.
  • No need to schedule an appointment to have them removed.  You can remove them yourself after a couple of days.
  • Child can start using thumbs as soon as bandage comes off, though he/she may not want to for a day or two.  Remember, they've been locked in place for months.  
Cons
  • Parents have to help the child take care of their incision while the wound is healing, keeping it clean and not playing too rough.  We put band-aids on each thumb to remind our daughter.
Tips for Before, During and After Surgery

Because there have been enough questions, I'd like to address some of my thoughts about preparing your child and yourself (the parent) for the surgery.

1.  Schedule the entire day for surgery:  Though the surgery will only take 2-3 hours, schedule the entire day.  I had my husband take off work to help me out.  It is nice to have someone to help out, especially if you have other children at home. Can you do it on your own?  I think so, but it would be more stressful.

2.  Talk to your child in simple terms about the surgery:  You know your child best.  If you think they need a couple of weeks to allow the idea of getting their thumbs fixed to sink in, talk to them early about it.  For most of us, we'll be taking in little children between the ages of 2-4 for surgery.  Typically, they don't need the worry of knowing about a looming surgery date. With my kids, I didn't tell them about it until 3-5 days before.  We all know that kids get scared of anything that has to do with cutting.  I was very careful not to use the word "cut" when I told my kids what would happen.  I explained it something like this:  "When we take you to the doctor to fix your thumbs, they will want you to get in some doctor pjs first.  You will get to put on your own clothes again after the doctor is done.  First the doctor will help you go to sleep so that he can work on your thumbs.  The nurses will put a funny plastic thing on on your mouth to help you sleep.  Then, when you wake up, your thumbs will be fixed!  You will have bandages on your hands to protect your thumbs."  I didn't want to go into a lot of detail about the bandages and how to take care of them until we actually got to that point.   It turned out to be wise.

3. What to bring the day of surgery:  Usually the surgery is planned in the morning because there is a 12 hour fasting restraint.  Because it was early, I woke up my kids and took them in their pjs first thing.  Be sure to bring a change of clothes, paying attention to a shirt that will have wide sleeves to get over the bandage or cast.  (I forgot this both times I took my daughters for surgery!)  Normally, the hospital or surgical center is pretty mindful of having a little gift for the pint-sized patient, but if you aren't sure, have a back-up plan of a something soft and cuddly to give your child afterwards... because they will not feel well when they come of the meds...  And for you, the parent, the surgery wait is about 2.5 hours, so if you can focus on a book, bring one.  If not, they usually have TVs and magazines in the waiting rooms and chatty people too!

4. Parting:  Depending on where your child has surgery, there may be different rules about how long the parent can stay with the child before the surgery.  It's a good idea to check with the hospital or surgery center before hand to find out if you can be there until the child falls asleep or if you have hand them off to a nurse before the anesthesia.   We've gone through both scenarios and both went fine.  When the nurse had to take my daughter, I told my daughter that the nurse would take care of her like a babysitter and bring her back to me when the surgery was done.  I didn't hear any crying, and didn't ask about it afterward, so ignorance is bliss in this situation :)

5.  Be prepared for sadness after the surgery:  Even though as a parent, I was really excited for my daughters' thumbs to be fixed and really excited to see them both after their surgeries, the look on their faces reminded me that they were not yet in the mood to celebrate. Coming out of anesthesia is a pretty confusing thing for kids, plus they may be feeling pain from the surgery.  I remember when my daughter 2 (she was 3) went through surgery, I was escorted to her room as she was waking up.  I  held her in my arms, watching her eyes open and close.  At one point as her eye opened, she held up her hands so she could see them.  When she saw the bright pink bandages on them, her eyes got big, her mouth frowned, and she began to cry and cry.  She yelled "I wanna go home!  I want these off!" and started hitting me.  I'm really glad that the she didn't have hard casts at that point.  She pelted me for a good ten minutes until we could get the discharge papers taken care of and reassure her that we would go home and that the bandages would come off in a couple of days.  My daughter 1 (she was 4 and a half when she had surgery) woke and was very weepy and sad.  Even the Barbie doll the nurses gave her didn't make her smile.  For both my daughters, that original sadness only last 1 or 2 hours.  I found it helpful to rent some movies and have some good cuddle time for the rest of the day.  Order pizza or have dinner made in advance.  Take it easy!

Daughter 2 an hour after surgery, with soft bandages, watching a video.
Daughter 1, with hard casts, waking from anesthesia.
6.  Something for the Pain:  The surgeon will likely perscribe a pain medication to help control pain after surgery.  Neither of my daughters liked it.  We ended up throwing it away both times.  We got by just fine on a dose of children's tyenol or ibuprofen.  In fact, one dose was all they needed.  They didn't complain about pain.

7.  When the dressings come off:  Whether your child gets a cast or a bandage, there is some prepartion needed for you and your child when it is time to remove the dressing.  With a hard cast, there will very likely be fear of the cast saw, no matter how carefully you prepare your child.  And then there is an ick-factor of seeing the incision area that kids (and mommies don't like to see).  What I'm saying is, don't expect that everything will be "all better" once the dressing is off.  I warned my daughter 2 right before I took off her bandage that it wouldn't look all better.  She started crying when she saw her thumbs, not because it hurt, but because of how it looked.  Daughter 1, because she had hard casts, also had to deal with the yucky skin that's all flaky from being covered.  Both my daughters were totally disgusted with the stitches and the incision. We covered the incision with bandaids for a few days.  You can use alcohol to wash off any remaining idoine (yellow stuff) from the surgery...or you can let it slowly wash off with soap and water.  If after a week the ends of the stitches are sticking out and irritating your child, you can cut the ends off with nail clippers.
See, it looks yucky!

8.  Using those thumbs:  If your child isn't using his/her thumbs after dressing is off, don't be alarmed.  It will take a day or two.  And soon, they'll be using them quite adeptly.  It could take up to a month.  If you notice problems, it's a good idea to call the surgeon.  My daughter 1 had some therapy after her surgery, but this is generally not necessary.  It's only been about three weeks since daughter 2's surgery and she has been using them fine.

9.  Follow up with the surgeon:  You will likely visit the surgeon once or twice to check on the healing progress of the thumbs. Then, it's history!

I hope I've covered most aspects of the process of trigger thumb surgery.  My twins just finished making a mess in the kitchen and have moved on to the laundry room. I should stop.  I hope you have a good surgery experience!

Please, those of you who have had children undergo trigger thumb surgery, share your tips as well.  Let's bring some awareness to this seemingly obscure phenomenon of pediatric trigger thumb!

64 comments:

  1. Awesome information! My daughter goes in for surgery tomorrow and this article has helped me grasp a better understanding of whats to come from a mom who's been there! Thanks!

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  2. my daughter just turned 2 and she goes in for this surgery on monday April 9th. I am so stressed out about it. She went for pre-op today and she was terrified of all of the testing, having her not understand is tough. This post has given me a better understanding of what to expect.

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    1. So glad it could shed some light for you. Hope things went smoothly. ;)

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    2. My ten year old son just had this surgery on Friday. That day and the next day he was able to bend his thumb but now he can't (four days post op), has anyone else here had this experience? I called the surgeons an dthey said she is away for two weeks.

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  3. Thanks so much for the info my son is 5 years and I never knew he had trigger thump until his thump snapped into place recently and the orthopedic doctor explained that he has trigger thump. From since he was 2yrs I noticed his thump was never straight and because he is a very active child he happened to snap the thump straight. Anyway thank you so much for this info I was so worried for his to have the surgery. His surgeon wants to use the regular soft bandage but he is such an active athletic child I was worried if this is the best way to go. Thanks again

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    1. I'm glad this was helpful to you. I hope your little one has a smooth operation and recovery!

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  4. This article was suuuuper helpful! Thank you for posting! I now have a million questions for my doctor, thank you for sharing! OOO!! Last question for you.....once you found out about the surgery, how long did you wait before you scheduled it? Did you doctor say it would get worse if you waited a few months? Thanks!

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  5. Trigger thumb can't really get that much worse if the child's thumbs are already locked. But, it's good to do the surgery before the child is using her/his thumbs a lot (using scissors, computer mouse. Your doctor may recommend waiting until your child is a certain age. But really, the decision is between you and your doctor. Wishing you guys well.

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  6. My son turned 2 July 19th and his Pedi recently took a look at his thumb and reffered us to a hand specialist. His thumb has been locked for awhile now but he has popped it straight a few times. We have a scheduled appointment to see a hand specialist and I would like to know do they x-ray and test to make diagnoses first for possibly other options besides surgery ? I am having a schedule c-section surgery for myself Oct 30 12 and I can't even imagine us both in surgery around the same time. Another question, is the hard cast painful to remove? My son hates band aids and rips them off any chance he gets.

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    1. Sounds like they are still trying to decide if surgery is the best route for you son. If it indeed is, this sort of surgery can definitely wait... Your C-section can't! :) (By the way, Oct 30 if a great day to have a baby and be born! I would know. It's my birthday and the day I had my twins!) The hard cast is not at all painful to remove, but it will likely freak your son out. It's just a very startling thing for a child. I wrote about my daughter's experience here: http://humdrumhero.blogspot.com/2010/01/casts-removed-after-trigger-thumb.html
      On the other hand,the soft bandage option would only have to be on your son for a day or two, so if you think you could manage to encourage your son to keep it on just for that amount of time, then you wouldn't have to deal with cast removal. Hope things go well with that new baby and your son's thumb! Take care.

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  7. Thanks for your stories. My 2 and 1/2 son will have the same surgery and I am pretty scared of it, but I know it's for his best. Thanks again.

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  8. I am so happy I found this blog. I am not sure if this is what my son has yet. He is 18 months old and we noticed that one of his thumbs is locked in a bent position. We looked back at photos and see that it has been like this for about 2-3months.
    Our doctor had no comments or diagnosis and is sending us to a specialist. Xrays were done and the doctor said nothing looked wrong, just in a bent position. Can trigger thumb be diagnosed with an xray?
    The doctor is referring us to a plastic surgeon, does that make sense?
    If my son does have trigger thumb do you think they would do surgery on an 18 month old? I definitely don't want him to go through surgery but definitely don't want it to be permanent either.
    Thanks so much!

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    1. Hi there. From what I can understand from your story, seems like your doctor is not at all familiar with trigger thumb. This is not abnormal. Trigger thumb can be diagnosed by looking at X-rays but it is not necessary. It can be diagnosed by examining the base of the affected them just as well. It just takes someone who knows what they are looking for. You might want to check the inside base of your son's thumb for a knot/bump. A plastic surgeon, huh? That is a new one to me. I'm not saying a plastic surgeon couldn't do it, but orthopedic surgeons are more the norm from what I have understood. At least, that's who we've been referred to with each trigger thumb case we've dealt with. I wish you luck in communicating with your health care providers. Sometimes, that is the hardest part. :) If it is trigger thumb, welcome to our little club! :)

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  9. Thank you so much for posting your experiences! My son has been through 3 surgeries since he was 6 months old for a severe Hypospadis and he has one more coming up. He is now 3 1/2 and we realized about 2 years ago that this thumbs seemed locked in place. He will be having both thumbs released next Thursday. We were so worried since we seemed to understand the basics of what was going to be done as well as the fact that he will have casts on both hands for a few weeks. We just had a major fear of not knowing what to expect for him. Your blog has helped us to relax a little. Just seeing the pictures of your beautiful girls and what the casts really look like (my mind had conjured up pictures of monstrous claw like casts that completely covered his hands and made everything impossible!). Again thank you, I think we will be able to make it through his surgery knowing there is a light at the end of the tunnel.

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    1. By now your son has had surgery. I hope it went well. Being able to bend his thumbs will be magical!

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  10. Thanks for all of your information. My daughter's thumb locked last week and after taking her to see the doctor today, she was indeed diagnosed with trigger thumb (on both thumbs). I'm glad to see that I am not the only mom that has had to worry about this issue and I find it comforting to have some idea of what to expect before during and after surgery for such a small child. Now I just have to wait to see an orthopedic surgeon and schedule the surgery...

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  11. thanks so much for the information, I'm 17 and I am waiting to find out if i need surgery for my trigger thumb.

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    1. Wow! 17! Was it never diagnosed or did it just become a problem for you? I'm curious to know if your thumb is locked or just triggering once in a while. Good luck to you.

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    2. It just started happening about a month ago, I was continuously complaining about it and I finally went to the doctor and she has referred me to a specialist because she thinks it is trigger thumb. It locks each time i bend it and so i have to click it back each time.

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    3. I saw the surgeon yesterday, turns out I do need surgery :( I will be having it in a couple of weeks. He also said that I have it in an unusual spot; instead of it being near my palm it is the middle of my thumb which is causing the trigger.

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    4. Hmmm. That's interesting that you have the nodule in a different spot. Did the doctor have any theory as to why? At any rate, thank you for sharing your experience as it certainly helps others.

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    5. I ended up having an ultrasound and turns out the bone in my thumb is putting pressure on the tendon so as well as having the tendon loosened I have to have some of the bone cut. I am only having a local anaesthetic rather than a general, surgery is this wednesday, I'm a little nervous.

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    6. I have now had the surgery, I have to keep the bandages on for two weeks and then see a hand therapist.

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    7. I had the surgery on wednesday, the surgeon cut off some of the bone that was putting pressure on the tendon as well as the nodule which was the size of a pea and loosened the tendons, i have a bandage on my thumb for the next two weeks and i will be seeing a hand therapist.

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    8. Just had my post op appointment and turns out what was originally thought to be extra bone that was causing the triggering was actually a tumour and once it was removed it was sent off to be tested to see if it was cancerous but it isn't which is great!

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    9. That's quite a story about your trigger thumb. Glad there was no cancer. I hope that thumb is working like it should now. Thanks for sharing!

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  12. Thanks so much for all of this info! I have read it probably 10 times since my daughter was diagnosed this past Thursday with trigger thumb. We have an apt with her surgeon in a few weeks and I am a little nervous
    She only has one hand ( special needs from China) and just started pre-school. So we are trying to figure out how this will all work and what to expect. Your blog has helped
    I do have some questions
    how long was the recovery- till they felt and acted like themselves again ?
    when could your girls go back to school (if applicable ) ?
    And which did you like best soft or hard cast?
    Thx again
    Ally

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    1. Hi, glad to answer your questions, but I hope I haven't taken too long to reply. With both my daughters, they were using their thumbs like normal within a week after their casts were removed. I liked the soft cast better because dealing with bathing a child and keeping hands clean isn't easy. Plus, with a soft cast, they can use their hands again within just two or three days after the surgery so that is nice. However, if I had a child that was very accident-prone, I'd probably opt for a hard cast to make sure the thumbs have plenty of protection while the incisions heal. I hope that helps and I am wishing you well with your little one!

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  13. I'm a 45 year old female who is scheduled to have trigger finger surgery on my left hand third finger. Been dealing with this issue for 8 months and have had several cortisone injections only for the problem to resurface. Since my job involves me using my hands/fingers on a daily basis, I decided to go with the surgery. A little anxious but looking forward to relieving the pain!

    PS: Also have trigger thumb and osteoarthritis of basilar joint of thumb in my right hand but I wear a protective thumb/wrist brace for stabilization and comfort. So far so good with that method. :)

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    1. Thanks for commenting. It's nice to hear about trigger thumb/finger in it's many forms! Wishing you well!

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  14. My six year old daughter has a trigger finger and is having surgery next Thursday the info has really helped me but I am still nervous for her.

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  15. Thanks so much for writing this post, I found it very helpful. My 5 year old son will go for trigger thumb surgery (right hand) this Friday (tomorrow!) and your tips will be really helpful...

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  16. I just stumbled across your blog looking for information on trigger thumb. My 2 1/2 year old son is scheduled for surgery on both thumbs later this month. We have been struggling with the decision to do them one at a time or both together and reading through your blog has been a big help. He will have hard casts for 7-10 days and we worried about play time but it sounds like your daughter found ways to play just fine :). Thanks for sharing all this info - it really helped me process the whole thing.

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  17. Thank you, thank you! We are going in tomorrow for my 7 year old's surgery and I'm feeling much more informed. Thank you!

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    1. Wow! A 7 seven year old. Did you just notice it, or was it something your child had for a while?

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  18. I'm thrilled to have found your story. I first noticed my 3yo sons thumb about 6 months ago. After a lot of research, my husband and I brought him to his pediatrician yesterday to get the ball rolling (referrals and all). I was astonished that the doctor said it was very rare since I've seen a lot of families that have had similar stories. He tried to "fix" his thumb in the office. I was holding my son while he tried to snap it back to the straight position. I can't lie, I smacked the doctor on the hand (not hauled off and punched the guy, more like you would if someone went to grab your last snickers bar). He didn't try to do that again. Needless to say, we are meeting with the surgeon in 2 weeks. You were so helpful and informative. As a scared mama I now feel a lot more prepared. Not only for what to expect during the surgery, but for the healing process. Thank you so much!

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    1. AHH! I am horrified that the doctor tried to correct it in that way. He obviously didn't understand that if he had managed to straighten it, nothing would have been fixed. Sheesh. I think he may have considered it rare because it seems to be very under diagnosed... just judging from the comments I get here. Way to stand up for your son! :) Glad you found some decent answers here. Doctors are only "practicing," they don't have all the answers. Thankfully, I believe parents are plenty able to find the answers they need. Best wishes!

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  19. Thank you for sharing your experience, my 12 months old son was just diagnosed and I opted to wait until he's 2 to do the surgery since they are gonna use general anesthesia. I'm really scared, but your post has help to calm my fears.

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    1. My son is 18 months and goes Wednesday for surgery and I'm so terrified

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  20. My daughter is 3yo and is having her trigger thumb surgery on 1/20/2014. I was checking to see how long is the recovery time. I scheduled her and myself off for 1 week from daycare and work post surgery for recovery. I hope that is more than enough time for her to recover.

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  21. Hi thanks so much for this information and your website. My 3.5 year old son is about to have the operation on both thumbs next Friday and your site has been so useful in helping me prepare for what is to come. Thank you!!

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  22. Thank you soooo much for taking your time to document all this info., my son is 2.5 years old. He is scheduled for surgery on Feb 25, 2014, I am worried about the surgery it self... Anastesia ......

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  23. Thank you so much for this, our 2-year-old is going in for this surgery in a couple days and we've been referring to your page. Thanks for the pics, it makes it a little bit less scary for us parents too :).

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  24. My four year old was diagnosed with trigger thumb recently. I showed the doctor his thumb and he told me he was pretty sure that's what it was and that some kids out grow it but many need surgery. He felt it best to refer us to a hand specialist to make a firm diagnosis and decide on treatment. The hand specialist told us it was congenital but surfaces after birth sometime as their hands grow. He says he will definitely need surgery but there is not a rush. We decided to wait until next year for insurance purposes. Here it is one month later, and I noticed my one year old's thumb is completely locked as well, so I guess we will be doing this twice too. :( I really hate that they will have to do general anesthesia. Any idea how long it is safe to wait?

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    1. Surgery can be done at any age. It really isn't a life or death sort of need. So, if you would rather wait until they are older, that is your choice. Since my first post about this surgery, I have received stories from some who had trigger thumb their whole life and never had the surgery. My best to you as you decide how and when to help your children!

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  25. Thank you for posting all this information on your blog. My 2 1/2 year old son was diagnosed with trigger thumb and we have surgery scheduled 3 weeks from now. I feel better about the surgery after reading all the information on here. It is hard to find good resources about what happens with the surgery and recovery.

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  26. I'm also thankful to hear your story! It's very scary to think of your "baby" going under any anesthesia and having any surgery. I met with the doctor today and he said we could do the surgery next month or wait 6 months. Any advice on a timeline? Also, are there any visible scars left from the surgery? Thanks for your help!

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    1. I can only give you my experience with the timeline. I had two daughters that had the surgery. One was four and a half and the other was three. For me, it was easier to deal with the three year old getting the surgery because she was still young enough that she depended on me for a lot anyway, so recovery wasn't too rough on her or me. For my older daughter, waiting to recover was frustrating because she had to have my help to do things that she could do before all on her own. I'm sure you'll make the best decision for your child. As for scars, it has been a few years for both my girls now, and I have to look really, really closely to be able to see any hint of the surgery. They healed very well.

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  27. My daughter was seen last year when she was 3 for her trigger thumb. We were advised to wait until she's 4 to see if it will self correct. We're getting closer to her 4th birthday and we haven't seen a change. In fact, recently she's begun complaining of thumb pain in the area of the nodule. My guess is we'll be scheduling surgery for early this fall. Thank you for your honest and helpful information on this topic. I'm wondering about when they started the IV line for your kiddos? I'm more worried about my daughter struggling with that more than any of the other "scary" parts. Perhaps, I'm just projecting my own fears though...

    Thank you, KC

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    1. Sorry it's taken me a while to reply! Your little one might have already has surgery by this point. But, at any rate, here's my response: My kids didn't have IVs during the surgery. It is really short. It takes about 15 minutes per thumb, so that generally isn't necessary. I hope all goes well for you and your family. Feel free to post how it goes. I know lots of people are reading these comments!

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  28. Thank you so much for the information...my 22 month old goes for surgery in 2 days and I don't know what to expect. This actually helped put me a bit at ease but it is still nerve-wracking to think my baby has to go thru the discomfort. Thanks again for sharing your story with everyone in order to give other people peace of mind.

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  29. Thank you so much!! My son goes in on Friday and I am TERRIFIED!!! I feel like I want to go back there and watch the doctors through the whole process! (I know I am a VERY overprotective mother..and I know that can't happen!) However, it would be nice! You article has helped me tremendously! Thanks for posting!

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  30. Thank you for posting such detailed information! I never would've thought to prepare her for the stitches being ugly. My daughter needs this surgery and we're in the deciding process. It's so scary.

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  31. Thank you so much for this blog. My eldest son had this surgery just over a year ago aged almost 4, and when we first spotted his bent thumbs at age three and a half this was the only place I found really useful information about this surgery for children. I am back to your post again now, almost 2 years to the day later, as we just found out my second son, now also aged 3 and a half, has the same thing!!! So I am here to refresh my memory and I recalled both your daughters had it too, such a strange thing. Anyway, having been through it once already I can say that I am much more relaxed about this time round, it's only the general anesthetic that is a bit of a concern to me now. Thanks again!!

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    1. So glad it has been helpful to you! I hope things have gone well for your children and you.

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  32. It took 4 doctors and nearly 6 months to diagnose our 3 year old daughter with bilateral congenital trigger thumb, I had read your blog and already knew what it was, but getting it medically recognised was difficult. We were advised as she was 3 it probably wasn't going to improve so surgery was recommended and we decided to go ahead with both thumbs together. We'll she's just had the surgery on Friday and all went amazing well! No tears at all! I had told her about pretty much everything so there were no surprises, and your blog massively helped me, so thank you so much! I was just wondering however if anyone knew what caused it? Is it hereditary?

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    1. Hi! I'm glad that my info here was helpful. I'm not much of a blogger, so thanks! From what I learned when I visited with doctors about this, it is hereditary... and in our case that made sense since my husband has a tell-tale bump on a tendon near the base of his thumb. But for him, he doesn't have trigger thumb, so the sheath that the tendon slides through must be large enough to accommodate that bump.

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  33. Hi my 2,5yrs old girl having same problem on her both thumbs. We are waiting for our surgery appointment now. The scariest thing for me if full anaesthetic she'll get and 2 weeks recovery period with hard bandage as I know we will get hard one. Do you have any suggestions for activities for these 2 weeks. Probably playground and such things won't be good idea as they can't grab and hold properly? Or can they? Just ordinary walks? How such small babies generally deal with bandage for 2 weeks? Didn't yours tried to take it off? When it comes wet-what do you do? Thank you so much for possibility to ask experienced mummy about these things! Best regards, Anita

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    1. Hi Anita,
      Hope I'm not too late. I agree that it is a scary thing to think about your child having to go through surgery. I wish I could help you feel at ease. I hope that your doctors and nurses can do that. But, I can tell you that the healing process isn't so bad. I found that my daughter played much the same way she always did, just making modifications. For instance, my daughter loved to color and found a way to do that even with casts. I was impressed. I bet the playing at the playground will still be a fun activity for your daughter-since she will be quick to figure out on her own what she can and can not do. But, you are her mom and know her best, you'll know how to help her. I hope the surgery goes well for your daughter and that she heals as she should.

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  34. Thank you for this post. My four year old son goes in for surgery this coming Friday to release his trigger thumb. I hate the thought of general anesthetic but I do feel it will be worth it to regain full use of his hand. It's just so nerve-wracking in the meantime!
    Your post has helped, thank you.

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  35. Hi, my son will be 4 years when bilateral trigger thumb surgery be performed in about 1 months' time. Did they do a pre-op before the operation? i called the clinic where the operation is going to be done and they said this is not necessary. Obviously I would rather do the checks before they give him the anaesthetic. Thanks

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    1. We didn't do any pre-op before the operation either. Hope things went well.

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  36. Hi my son got the trigger thumb release 13 days ago and they took off the dressings today. They also removed the stitches. Well I was told to help him move his thumb and as he sleeps I noticed his thumb is bent so I move it and it pops. Then maybe an hour later I see it bent once again and it pops again is this normal???

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    1. Hi, I would certainly make an appointment with his surgeon about that. Is it normal? I'm not sure. I will tell you that my oldest daughter had one thumb that responded well to the surgery, while the other thumb did not respond as well. That thumb still pops, but she can move it and it doesn't stay stuck (where before she couldn't even straighten it). I have decided not to pursue another operation because it is not on her dominant hand. But, since you have noticed this so soon after surgery, I think it's wise to talk with the surgeon.

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