Thursday, October 16, 2008


I am hypermobile, many of you knew that already but not all. To explain simply, many of my joints move beyond their normal range of motion. It is expressed the most in my fingers, knees, and shoulders. It was 'fun' as a kid since I could do all kinds of tricks and was flexible without even trying. It isn't fun anymore. The wear and tear are my hypermobile joints has caught up with me. For a few months now my hands and fingers have been making me miserable. I always feel like someone just stepped on my hands. Like a good girl, I saw my doctor who ran all the requisite tests looking for rheumatoid arthritis and lupus and thankfully they were all negative, it is 'just' my hypermobility. I'm very thankful that I don't have a chronic, debilitating, degenerative illness but I still can't play catch with my kids or do laundry without pain.
I remembered hearing about splints that some hypermobile patients wear to help stabilize their fingers. I searched around and finally found a company that will sell them without an order from a PT/OT/CHT. I bought one. I wanted to try it on my worst finger first before ponying up the cash for enough to splint all the fingers that are painful-these splints are about $60 each. It came yesterday. All I can say is WOW! what a difference. I have a ways to go with healing but it is pretty neat to take a hold of something without my finger hyperextending and hurting.

Some pictures. I have ugly man hands, just so you know.

My thumb. It has 180 degrees of motion.

My right ring finger. It has the highest degree of hyperflexion of my fingers but is almost pain free.
You can see how far it flexes.

How it looks/flexes with the splint on.

I bought the splint for my right middle finger. Here you see how stable it is with the splint. No pictures of it hyperflexed without the splint because there is too much pain. That finger is actually starting to tilt to the right from the PIP (middle joint).

All in all this is a no big deal problem but I am only 37. I am seeing a rheumatologist in December. She comes highly recommended, we'll see what she has to say. I'm not looking to be pain-free. I don't think that is realistic and it isn't necessary. I'd just like to be able to perform most of my daily functions without *added* pain. It may be all I need is splints. My big goal is to be able to toss a football.

1 comment:

Karen said...

I hope these splints work wonders and that the appt with the Rheum. brings you some answers and the ability to toss the football :)