Back to work


I had open release surgery on my hand two weeks ago and everything is healing nicely, apart from the peeling skin on my scar but my surgeon has said I should go back to work because it would help my fingers. Unfortunately I work with money, and use a hand held computer (in my operated on hand) and I am having trouble gripping the money and picking it up. There is also a lot of numbness after I have used my hand a lot. Should I phone my doc and ask for more time off or go into work? I'm not in a lot of pain (especially not like before) and I wonder if it would help to go back to work, I'm in a quandry tbh.


It's hard to answer that one online I'm afraid. If you were getting numbness in the distribution of the median nerve (thumb and first 2 and a half fingers) before surgery and using the hand produces exactly the same pattern of numbness again then I would guess that might indicate that there is still enough post-operative swelling and scarring to raise the pressure in the tunnel during use sufficiently to impair nerve function. In such circumstances I would be inclined to try and avoid using it to the extent that induces the numbness. If we are talking about other patterns of numbness though I think I would need to examine the hand. As a more general principle I think your surgeon is right to encourage use of the hand - if you stop moving it altogether it will simply stiffen up. JB

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