What is trigger finger?

Trigger finger is a condition where your finger jams or gets stiff. It can also affect your thumb.

The tendons that bend your fingers usually glide freely through tight tunnels in your hand. If the fibrous wall of a tunnel thickens, the tunnel becomes too tight, usually resulting in your finger jamming in a bent position (see figure 1).

Trigger Finger Release

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Figure 1

What are the benefits of surgery?

The aim is to allow your finger to move freely.

Are there any alternatives to surgery?

A steroid injection into the base of your finger can treat the problem. However, you may need more than one injection.

If your trigger finger continues or is severe, surgery is usually recommended.

What does the operation involve?

The operation can usually be performed under a local anaesthetic and usually takes about 20 minutes.

Your surgeon will make a small cut at the base of your finger. They will cut open the fibrous tunnel that is causing the trigger finger. 

What complications can happen?

1 General complications

  • Pain
  • Bleeding
  • Infection of the surgical site (wound)
  • Scarring of your skin

2 Specific complications

  • Numbness
  • Tenderness
  • Bowstringing
  • Severe pain, stiffness and loss of use of your hand

How soon will I recover?

You should be able to go home the same day.

Your surgeon will tell you when you can return to normal activities.

Keep your hand raised and bandaged for two days. It is important to gently exercise your fingers, elbow and shoulder to prevent stiffness.

Regular exercise should help you to return to normal activities as soon as possible. Before you start exercising, ask the healthcare team or your GP for advice.


Author: Prof Tim Davis ChM FRCS (Tr. & Orth.)

Illustrations: Medical Illustration Copyright © Nucleus Medical Art. All rights reserved. www.nucleusinc.com

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How long does it take?

Expected length of hospital stay

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Private Trigger Finger Release treatment prices.

Option In London Outside London Under 16's
£2430.00 n/a n/a

Trigger Finger Release - where does it take place?

HCA Healthcare UK hospitals offering Shoulder, Wrist & Hand treatments

See below for the HCA hospitals that offer private Trigger Finger Release treatment.

Trigger Finger Release - consultants

Consultants offering Shoulder, Wrist & Hand treatments

Some of the country's top consultants choose to practice in our World-Class Private Hospitals and private units. See below for the consultants available for this procedure.

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