Frequently Asked Questions

Frequently Asked Questions

Explore answers to frequently asked questions about hand and wrist conditions, treatments, and procedures to better understand how we can assist you.

I firmly believe in exploring all conservative treatment options before recommending surgery. This includes:

  • Hand therapy: To improve strength, flexibility, and reduce pain.
  • Splinting or bracing: To support your hand and promote healing.
  • Injections: To reduce inflammation and manage pain.
  • Lifestyle modifications: To reduce strain on your hand.

However, if these approaches don’t provide sufficient relief, or if your condition risks worsening without intervention, surgery may offer the best solution. It’s a personalised decision we make together.

To discuss your individual situation and whether surgery might be right for you, schedule a consultation

All surgeries carry some degree of risk, but hand surgeries are generally considered safe. Potential risks include:

  • Infection: While uncommon, I take precautions to minimise this risk.
  • Nerve damage: These can occur but it is very rare, and I’ll discuss the specific risks based on your procedure.
  • Incomplete symptom relief: I’ll be honest about realistic expectations for your outcome.

During consultation, I’ll provide a detailed explanation of the risks associated with your specific surgery options. Feel free to ask all your questions!

To discuss your individual situation and whether surgery might be right for you, schedule a consultation

My goal is always to minimise scarring as much as possible. Here’s what you can expect:

  • Surgical Techniques: I use precise incisions and careful wound closure techniques. Whenever possible, I’ll consider minimally invasive options that may result in even smaller scars.
  • Location: Some areas of the hand heal with less noticeable scarring than others. I’ll discuss this during your consultation.
  • Individual Healing: Everyone heals differently due to factors like skin type and age. I’ll guide you on post-op wound care to promote optimal results.
  • Scar Management: If needed, I can recommend treatments to further improve scar appearance once your incision has healed.

Rest assured, I’m committed to achieving the best aesthetic outcome possible while prioritising the success of your hand surgery.

To discuss your individual situation and whether surgery might be right for you, schedule a consultation

Recovery time after hand surgery varies depending on the specific procedure and your individual healing process. Here’s a general overview:

  • Desk-based Jobs: You might return to light duties within a few days to a week, especially if you don’t need your affected hand extensively.
  • Manual Labour: This often requires several weeks off to regain strength and dexterity.
  • Driving: It’s important to be able to safely grip the steering wheel. This could range from a few days to several weeks, depending on the procedure. See FAQ on driving after surgery – link
  • Specific Restrictions: I’ll provide detailed instructions on what movements to avoid and how long to limit certain activities.

Throughout your recovery, we’ll work closely together to determine when you can safely resume your normal work and hobbies.

To discuss your individual situation and whether surgery might be right for you, schedule a consultation

The goal of hand surgery is to restore as much function and pain-free movement as possible. Here’s what influences your unique outcome:

  • Severity of Your Condition: If the condition was advanced, surgery might offer significant improvement, but not necessarily a 100% return to pre-injury function.
  • Type of Surgery: Certain procedures have very high success rates for full recovery.
  • Commitment to Rehab: Physical or occupational therapy plays a crucial role in optimising your results.
  • Individual Healing: Everyone responds differently to surgery and therapy.

During your consultation, I’ll provide a realistic assessment of what you can expect based on your specific condition and surgical plan. My commitment is to help you achieve the best possible outcome.

To discuss your individual situation and whether surgery might be right for you, schedule a consultation

While hand surgeries have a high success rate, there are times when the outcome doesn’t fully meet expectations. Here’s what you need to know:

    • Realistic Understanding: It’s important to go into surgery with realistic goals. While I strive for the best results, there are no absolute guarantees.
    • Possible Scenarios: Sometimes pain relief is significant but not complete, or function improves, but there might be some residual stiffness.
    • Addressing Shortcomings: If your results aren’t optimal, we’ll discuss further options like additional therapy, modifications to your recovery plan, or in rare cases, revision surgery.
  • Proper preparation is preferable: preparing for your surgery is paramount. Ask questions, read my blog posts and FAQs – link and be as informed as possible. 
  • Open Communication: I encourage you to share any concerns during or even before, your follow-up appointments. We’ll partner to find solutions even if the initial outcome isn’t perfect.

My goal is to support you throughout the entire process, not just until surgery day.

To discuss your individual situation and whether surgery might be right for you, schedule a consultation

Preventing future hand problems depends on your specific diagnosis and surgery. Here are some general strategies:

  • Post-Op Therapy: Follow through with your prescribed exercises to build strength and prevent stiffness.
  • Ergonomics: I can suggest modifications to your workstation or hobbies to reduce repetitive strain or awkward postures.
  • Listen to Your Body: Don’t ignore new pain or recurring symptoms. Early intervention might prevent a condition from worsening.
  • Managing Chronic Conditions: If you have arthritis or other conditions affecting your hands, staying on top of your treatment plan is key.

During your follow-up appointments, we can discuss tailored prevention strategies specific to your situation.

To discuss your individual situation and whether surgery might be right for you, schedule a consultation

Most hand surgeries have minimal long-term risks. However, it’s important to be aware of some potential issues:

  • Recurrent Symptoms: Certain conditions have a chance of returning over time. This risk varies based on the original problem e.g Ganglions – link
  • Stiffness or Weakness: Even with successful surgery and therapy, some minor changes in flexibility or strength compared to before your condition developed are possible.
  • Nerve Changes: In procedures near nerves, there’s a very small risk of permanent numbness or altered sensation e.g. carpal or cubital tunnel syndromes – link

I’ll provide a thorough explanation of the specific long-term risks associated with your potential surgery during your consultation.

To discuss your individual situation and whether surgery might be right for you, schedule a consultation

It’s natural to have questions or even some worries during your recovery process. Here’s how I ensure you feel supported:

  • Direct access: You’ll have my direct contact information to address any concerns throughout your recovery.
  • Don’t hesitate: Please reach out if you experience unexpected pain, swelling, or other symptoms that worry you.

Your well-being matters: My priority is your comfort and a smooth recovery journey.

To discuss your individual situation and whether surgery might be right for you, schedule a consultation

I understand that hand problems can disrupt your life, and timely care is crucial. Here’s what you can expect:

  • Prioritising your needs: My team and I strive to schedule your appointment as quickly as possible – usually less than two weeks!
  • Individualised timing: Wait times may vary based on your work & life schedules and preferences 
  • Urgency: I reserve some slots each week for urgent issues that are time critical

We’re here to help: Please let us know if your pain or dysfunction is severe, and we’ll do our best to expedite your care.

To discuss your individual situation and whether surgery might be right for you, schedule a consultation

Insurance plans can be complex, especially regarding surgical coverage. Let’s work together to navigate this:

  • Contact your insurer: They can provide the most accurate details about your specific plan and coverage for hand surgery.
  • My team can help: We’re experienced in verifying benefits, codes and procedures and can assist with any pre-authorisation requirements.
  • Policy excess: Be aware of excess payments so any invoice from me is not a surprise!

Focus on your care: Our goal is to minimise any financial stress so you can concentrate on your recovery.

To discuss your individual situation and whether surgery might be right for you, schedule a consultation

Your initial consultation is an important step in understanding your hand problem, gaining trust in me and developing a treatment plan. Here’s what to expect:

  • Thorough discussion: We’ll review your medical history and discuss your current symptoms in detail.
  • Careful examination: I’ll perform a comprehensive hand examination.
  • Imaging if needed: I may order tests like X-rays, ultrasounds, or MRIs to help diagnose your condition.
  • One stop: I can do many injections at the same siting including steroid injections 

Expect it to last for approximately 20-30 minutes (possibly including an X-ray) to ensure we have enough time.

To discuss your individual situation and whether surgery might be right for you, schedule a consultation

To accurately diagnose your condition and determine the best treatment, I may recommend additional tests. These could include:

  • X-rays: To visualize your bones.
  • Ultrasound: To assess tendons, ligaments, and sometimes nerves.
  • MRI: For detailed images of soft tissues and complex problems.
  • CT: to look at more complex bone or joint problems. 

I’ll explain why: I’ll always discuss the reasons for recommending any specific tests.

To discuss your individual situation and whether surgery might be right for you, schedule a consultation

I understand the anxiety that comes with waiting for test results. Here’s what I do to minimise any delays:

  • Timely review: I’ll review your test results as soon as they become available to me.
  • Direct communication: I’ll share your results with you promptly, either in person or during a phone call but rest assured it will be at the earliest possible convenience 
  • Explaining the findings: We’ll discuss what your results mean and how they impact your treatment plan.

My goal is to keep you informed and involved in your care every step of the way.

To discuss your individual situation and whether surgery might be right for you, schedule a consultation

Absolutely! Open communication is essential for a positive treatment experience. Here’s how I make myself accessible:

  • My direct contact: You’ll have my WhatsApp mobile number for questions or concerns between appointments.
  • No question too small: Don’t hesitate to reach out, even if your question seems minor.
  • Your peace of mind matters: Timely answers can ease worries and support your recovery.

I’m committed to being a partner in your healing journey, not just your surgeon.

To discuss your individual situation and whether surgery might be right for you, schedule a consultation

Preparing for surgery can feel overwhelming. Rest assured, I’ll provide you with all the necessary guidance and support:

  • Clear instructions: You’ll receive detailed pre-operative instructions to ensure a smooth process.
  • Understanding the procedure: I’ll thoroughly explain what to expect before, during, and after your surgery. See my patient info pages – link
  • Additional resources: I may recommend resources or referrals to further support your preparation.

My aim is to empower you with knowledge and reduce any pre-surgery anxieties.

To discuss your individual situation and whether surgery might be right for you, schedule a consultation

Physiotherapy and in particular Hand Therapy plays a crucial role in achieving optimal recovery after hand surgery. Here’s how I approach your rehabilitation:

  • Personalised plan: Your therapy plan will be tailored to your specific surgery and individual needs.
  • Collaboration with therapists: I often work closely with skilled hand therapists to maximise your progress.
  • Focus on your goals: The goal of therapy is to restore your hand function and alleviate pain.

I’m invested in your long-term success, and that includes a comprehensive recovery plan.

To discuss your individual situation and whether surgery might be right for you, schedule a consultation

Regular follow-up appointments are crucial for monitoring your recovery after hand surgery. Here’s what you can expect:

  • Appointment frequency: The schedule will vary based on your procedure and progress, but early follow-ups are usually more frequent such as a wound check at 2 weeks. 
  • Assessing your progress: At each visit, I’ll evaluate your healing, pain levels, and range of motion.
  • Therapy adjustments: We may modify your therapy plan as needed to optimise your recovery.
  • Addressing concerns: This is your opportunity to ask questions and discuss any concerns you have.

My goal is to ensure your smooth recovery and address any issues promptly.

To discuss your individual situation and whether surgery might be right for you, schedule a consultation

While most recoveries progress smoothly, it’s important to know you’re not alone if you face any challenges. Here’s how I provide support:

  • Open communication: Encourage discussing any new pain, setbacks in function, or other worries immediately.
  • Evaluating the issue: We’ll work together to understand the cause of the setback and determine the best course of action.
  • Adjusting your plan: This might involve modifying therapy, further investigations, or in rare cases, additional procedures.

Remember, setbacks are a normal part of some recoveries. I’m committed to helping you overcome them and achieve your goals.

To discuss your individual situation and whether surgery might be right for you, schedule a consultation

Yes, I offer ultrasound-guided techniques for both carpal tunnel and trigger finger releases. Here’s why this might be a good option for you:

  • Precision: Ultrasound allows for real-time visualisation of the structures involved, increasing accuracy.
  • Smaller incisions: This often leads to less scarring and faster recovery.
  • Performed as a “minor op”: In some cases, these procedures can be done in a minor ops setting rather than an operating room.

During your consultation, we’ll discuss whether an ultrasound-guided approach is the best fit for your specific situation.

To discuss your individual situation and whether surgery might be right for you, schedule a consultation

Minimally invasive techniques offer several advantages over traditional open hand surgeries. These benefits include:

  • Smaller incisions: This means less scarring and often a more cosmetic result.
  • Faster recovery: Many patients experience less pain and regain function more quickly.
  • Reduced risk: Some complications may be less likely with minimally invasive approaches
  • Outpatient procedures: Often, these surgeries can be performed without an overnight hospital stay.

I’m committed to using the least invasive techniques whenever possible to give you the best possible outcome.

To discuss your individual situation and whether surgery might be right for you, schedule a consultation

While minimally invasive surgery doesn’t eliminate all risks, it can often lower the likelihood of certain complications compared to traditional techniques. Here’s why:

  • Less tissue disruption: Smaller incisions and less surgical manipulation can reduce the risk of bleeding or tissue damage.
  • Potential for lower infection rates: Studies suggest minimally invasive procedures may slightly reduce infection risk.

It’s important to remember that all surgery carries some risk. I’ll discuss the specific risks for your procedure during your consultation.

To discuss your individual situation and whether surgery might be right for you, schedule a consultation