Closeup side view of a man having his wrist examined by a doctor.Wrist and Hand Arthritis

Arthritis is a condition in the body where a joint is inflamed, causing a dull pain or stiffness. Wrist and hand arthritis is an inflammation of the interphalangeal joint, which connects the fingers and wrist bones. Major causes of this type of arthritis include frequent or severe previous injury to the area (leading to weakness of the joint), Rheumatoid disease (which causes damage to many different joints), or infection to the joint (which may permanently damage the tissue, since joints or made of non-regenerative cartilage.)

Tendonitis

When extraordinary strain is placed on a tendon, the flexible tissue that connects muscles to the bones, that tendon could become inflamed—a condition known as tendonitis. Sometimes, the condition also results from very small tears in the tissue, most likely caused by overuse or repetition of specific movements. Tendonitis is more likely to occur in older adults, as tendons break down more easily with age.

Strains and Sprains

The difference between a strain and a sprain is the part of the body affected. A strain is what occurs when a muscle or tendon is worn out or overstretched. Pain can develop over time as the muscle continues to fray, or it can come on suddenly when the tissue has been aggravated by an overzealous movement.

A sprain is an injury that results from a ligament that has been torn or overworked. A wrist sprain is noticeable immediately following the displacement and usually involves considerable pain. A sprain can result after falling or any movement that pushes the tendon into an unnatural position.