“There may be a significant risk in not seeing a specialist for a painful hand condition,”
Dr. Evanson said… Many hand or upper extremity injuries may cause you to avoid certain activities, but when these minor pains are Ignored and not evaluated by a hand specialist, they can go from what someone thinks is a short-term problem to a chronic condition. A patient may find that non-operative treatments, such as an injection, brace or physical/ occupational therapy that could have corrected the problem may not work as effectively if there is a delay in evaluation. And that delay may ultimately require a more involved treatment or even surgery.” Dr. Evanson’s practice also Includes microsurgery, which involves the use of a microscope to repair damaged nerves or blood vessels. He believes, “If we can fix the injury early, it is possible for patients to have very good, long-term outcomes.”
Tennis elbow and golfer’s elbow involve degeneration of the tendons that extend and flex the fingers and wrist. These conditions can be caused by sports, repetitive activity or even with typical routines such as housework. “For most people the condition will go away without surgery. But if the pain persists, we can offer bracing, therapy with modalities, steroid Injections, or PRP (platelet-rich plasma) Injections,” Dr. Evanson said. “When it comes to rotator cuff disorders of the shoulder, people are usually pretty aware there is a problem. They will often have pain when trying to lift things overhead or away from the body. They may also have difficulty sleeping on that shoulder. There may be inflammation or a tear, so n you take an anti-inflammatory.
medication such as Ibuprofen and it does not resolve, please come in and talk to a specialist” For Dr. Evanson the most rewarding part of his practice is seeing people getting better, going back to being able to use their hands for the things they enjoy. “People tell me, ‘I didn’t realize how much I need my hands.’ There are a lot of things I can do to help, and It Is rewarding to know my patients are getting back to the activities they love without pain. They really appreciate a return to normal, especially when their treatment Is as simple as a brace or an Injection. I grew up In Northwest Indiana, and it means a lot for me to be back here and helping my community. Tips to prevent tendonitis include:
- Avoiding activities that put too much stress on tendons and joints.
- Learning the correct way to do a new activity.
- Ergonomically adjusting keyboard and workspace.
North Point Orthopaedics has offices at 9445 Calumet Ave., Munster; 15900 W. 101 st St., Dyer; and 1505 S. Court St., Suite 101, Crown Point. For more information, call 219-836-1060.
According to Dr. Brian Evanson, North Point Orthopaedics is bringing specialty orthopedic care to people right here in the Region. Dr. Evanson, a partner at North Point Orthopaedics in Munster, Is a board-certified orthopedic surgeon specializing in hand, elbow and shoulder disorders and treatment options, including surgery. He received his medical degree from Indiana University School of Medicine, then completed a residency in orthopedics and a subspecialty fellowship In hand and upper extremity to further his expertise in conditions affecting the arm. People may not realize when they should see an orthopedic specialist for disorders of the hand, elbow or shoulder, instead dismissing or tolerating the pain, “Any time you’re having pain that lasts for more than a week, it is worth coming in to be evaluated. We want to get you back to doing what you want to do,” Dr. Evanson said.
Some symptoms that may warrant seeking an orthopedic hand specialist include:
- Difficulty using your hand, arm or wrist for daily functions, including typing on your phone/ computer or picking up a gallon of milk
- Pain in the fingers, hand, wrist or arm that lasts for more than a week
- Swelling or bruising of the hand or wrist
- Joint pain that Increases with activity and does not go away with rest
- Limited range of motion Among the most common conditions
Dr. Evanson sees are injuries involving repetitive motions, such as carpal tunnel syndrome and rotator cuff disorders. The cause of many painful conditions Is tendonitis, inflammation or irritation of a nerve, which can cause swelling and tenderness around the Joint affected. Conditions that a specialist in orthopaedic hand surgery treats include:
- Carpal tunnel syndrome
- Injury to the hand, wrist, elbow or shoulder
- Trigger finger
- Tendonitis of the hand, wrist. elbow or shoulder
- Bent or angled fingers