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Physical Therapy Treatment for Nerve Entrapments at Wrist

Wrist Sprains

Wrist sprains involve injury to the ligaments of the wrist joint which often occurs due to trauma, such as a fall on an outstretched hand. There are different grades of wrist sprains, depending on whether the ligaments were overstretched, partially torn or fully ruptured. Treatments will respect the natural time-frames for healing of the affected ligaments. 

Physical Therapy treatments include:

  • Mobilizations to improve the flexibility on the wrist joint 
  • Strengthening exercises to the surrounding wrist musculature 
  • Stretches once healing has occurred 

Special attention will be made to wrist extension, which is the motion of your hand bending backwards. This is often painful and limited in those who have had a wrist sprain. Limited wrist extension affects one’s ability to weight bear on the hand (see picture below). In addition to range of motion, we will monitor your grip strength and progress towards your individualized goals. 

Wrist Strains

Wrist strains involve injury or overuse of the muscles/tendons of the wrist. A strain occurs when the muscles cannot adapt to the demands caused by repetitive activity. 

Physical Therapy treatments include:

  • Progressive strengthening exercises to prepare the wrist muscles to perform the desired physical activity with less pain or limitations
  • Soft tissue mobilizations 
  • Mobilizations to improve flexibility of the wrist joint (tightness in the wrist joint can cause increase stress on the wrist muscles) 
  • Dry needling to reduce pain
  • Patient education on ways to adjust repetitive activity 


Related Articles

How do we track your progress?

We define patient-centered goals as what you hope to accomplish from physical therapy. While these are typically activity-specific goals, often patients report they just wish to experience less pain.

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Nerve Entrapments in Wrist

Nerve entrapment occurs when a nerve is compressed by surrounding joints, muscles or tendons and results in injury or irritation to the nerve. Two common nerve entrapments affecting the wrist are ulnar nerve entrapment (Guyon’s Canal Syndrome) and median nerve entrapment (Carpal Tunnel Syndrome).

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