Why does finger joint pain occur and how is it treated?

Causes of pain in the finger joints

Pain in the finger joints can occur for various reasons. Any pathological condition requires competent treatment.

Joint diseases require an integrated approach. It includes the use of medication, diet, physical therapy, specialty gymnastics, and alternative medicine.

Possible causes of pain in the finger joints

Joint pain can occur at any age. There are many possible reasons for this phenomenon.


In 40% of cases, pain in the finger joints is caused by this cause. This pathology is often referred to as polyarthrosis or knotty fingers. It belongs to dystrophic diseases and is characterized by slow progression, which is why patients often ignore the first stage of the disease.

The disease most commonly affects people over 50 and rarely occurs in people under 40.

The causes of polyosteoarthritis are often referred to as heredity, but there are other factors that provoke them:

  • climax;
  • violation of material exchange;
  • pathology of the thyroid and other endocrine glands;
  • Diabetes mellitus.

The joints contain cartilage that is beginning to break down. This means that natural lubrication is compromised, resulting in dryness and cracking.

Due to the lack of lubrication and drying, the articular cartilages rub against each other, causing an inflammatory process. Against this background, an abnormal inflammatory synovial fluid develops, which expands the joints from the inside. As a result, their deformation occurs, accompanied by painful sensations.

Polyosteoarthritis is accompanied by other symptoms. They are mainly represented by Bouchard and Heberden nodules:

  • Bouchard's nodulesdevelop slowly and without complications. They usually form on the side surfaces of the joints, giving them a fusiform shape.
  • Heberden nodulesaffect the distal interphalangeal joints on their dorsal and lateral parts. They are characterized by a symmetrical development on both hands. The formation of nodules is often accompanied by swelling and redness of the skin around the joints. Sensations of pain and burning sensation appear, although in 30% of cases the pathology is asymptomatic.

As polyosteoarthritis progresses, joint stiffness increases. The consequence of the pathology is knotty fingers.

Rheumatoid arthritis and Still's disease

why there is pain in the joints of the fingers

This disease belongs to systemic pathologies of connective tissue and has a complex autoimmune pathogenesis. Pathology rarely manifests itself in patients under 30 years of age. It is five times less common in men.

Signs of rheumatoid arthritis depend on its stage:

  1. The initial stage of the disease is characterized by periarticular edema of the bursa. This leads to pain, swelling of the periarticular region and a local increase in temperature.
  2. In the second stage, the cells begin to divide rapidly, making the synovia denser.
  3. In the third stage, inflamed cells produce an enzyme that affects both cartilage and bones, so the affected joints are usually deformed. This stage is accompanied by an increase in pain and a loss of motor functions.

There are three groups of possible causes of rheumatoid arthritis:

  • inheritance.
  • infections. Pathological changes can be caused by some paramyxoviruses, herpes viruses, hepatoviruses, and retroviruses.
  • Triggering factors. Pathological changes can be triggered by hypothermia, poisoning, stress, use of certain drugs, hyperinsolation and endocrinopathy.

Still's disease is a form of rheumatoid arthritis. It is usually accompanied by a fever, rash, and itching. This disease is more often diagnosed in children. In addition to the joints, Still's disease can affect the lymph nodes, causing pleurisy and pericarditis.

Psoriatic arthritis

This pathology is one of the forms of arthritis and can appear after 20 years. It develops against the background of psoriasis, but in some cases precedes it.

In addition to painful sensations, the pathology is accompanied by the following signs:

  • swelling of the joints;
  • the acquisition of a bluish-purple skin in the periarticular area;
  • the appearance of bumps and pits on the nails;
  • slight stiffness.

There is a destructive form of pathology, which is characterized by rapid bone erosion. It is fraught with loss of joint mobility.

The inflammatory process can affect not only the joints, but also some organs. Skin plaques characteristic of psoriasis in this arthritis are often associated with the appearance of acne.

Possible causes of psoriatic arthritis are:

  • Alcohol abuse;
  • smoking;
  • stress;
  • skin damage;
  • side effects of some drugs;
  • changes in hormone levels;
  • Excess of ultraviolet radiation.

Infectious arthritis

This type of arthritis is also known as septic and is characterized by an inflammatory process caused by bacteria, viruses, fungi, or parasites.

There are many possible symptoms of a pathology - the clinical picture depends on the causative agent of the infection.

The main signs of the disease are:

  • pain;
  • restriction of mobility;
  • hyperemia of the affected area;
  • swelling.

Since the cause of the pathology is infection, it can be accompanied by fever, chills, and intoxication syndrome.

Infectious arthritis can develop against the background of another disease - rheumatoid arthritis, osteoarthritis, diabetes mellitus, obesity. The reason can be alcohol and drug addiction, sexually transmitted infection.


This pathology is also known as gouty arthritis. It's a metabolic disease. When this happens, uric acid or sodium monourate is deposited in the tissues of the body. In women, gout is much less common.

The pathology is characterized by a paroxysmal character. Exacerbation episodes can last from 3 days to a week and a half. Attacks are distinguished by their sharp appearance and the same quick termination. The presence of seizures means an inflammatory process.

The disease often starts to get worse at night and can be accompanied by the following symptoms:

  • Pain worse on movement;
  • The skin over the inflamed joint turns red.
  • body temperature rises;
  • tophuses are formed around the inflamed joints - whitish growth under the skin;
  • lesions are usually unilateral.

In addition to the acute period, there are latent and chronic stages of pathology. In the first case, the course of the disease is asymptomatic, and the only sign is hyperuricemia (blood test indicator). The chronic stage is characterized by long periods of remission.


how to get rid of pain in the finger joints

This pathology is a form of osteoarthritis that only affects the thumb. In most cases, rhizarthrosis is a manifestation of polyosteoarthritis, but in 4-5 patients it is a disease in its own right.

About every second person has this pathology caused by trauma. It can be household or exercise.

There are other causes of the pathology:

  • incomplete rehabilitation in the event of a fracture in the wrist;
  • permanent minor injuries to the joint capsule;
  • inheritance;
  • joint dysplasia;
  • disorders in the endocrine system;
  • metabolic disorder;
  • the effects of certain drugs that cause changes in cartilage tissue.

There are 3 stages of pathology:

  1. At first the person just feels uncomfortable.
  2. Then bone growth occurs and painful sensations intensify due to the exposure of the nerve endings.
  3. In the last phase the thumb is severely deformed and its mobility can be completely lost.

Pain is the main symptom of an illness. It increases with movement, atmospheric pressure drop under cold or hot water. At first the pain is painful, and at the last stage of the pathology it becomes simply unbearable.

De Quervain's disease (tenosynovitis)

In this case, only the ligaments of the thumb become inflamed. This pathology is provoked by constant and monotonous movements of the hands, as a result of which the tendon that runs along the wrist is slightly damaged. Trauma can be another cause of the disease.

Illness often accompanies people in certain professions:

  • musician;
  • seamstresses;
  • painter;
  • athletes (tennis players, skiers);
  • bricklayer;
  • typists.

This pathology can develop at any age. Painful sensations can appear spontaneously, but more often they are provoked by straining the thumb - pushing, stretching, trying to grab an object.

Stenosing ligamentitis

This pathology is also known as Knott's disease or Schnappfinger's disease. The cause is inflammation of the tendon and the formation of knots on it.

In this case, the affected finger bends and, problematically, returns to its original position.

Painful sensations occur when the finger is flexed and stretched. In addition to the pain, other symptoms are characteristic of the disease:

  • deafness;
  • increased sensitivity;
  • joint swelling;
  • Lump formation (knots).

Stenosing ligamentitis can be triggered by rheumatoid arthritis, diabetes mellitus and high stress on the joints.

Risk factors

Any pathology has several possible reasons for its development. There are also a number of risk factors that increase the chance of developing finger joints:

  • hereditary predisposition;
  • chronic infection;
  • disorders of the immune system;
  • pathology of material exchange;
  • changed the hormonal background;
  • trauma and microtrauma;
  • long-term negative effects.


When painful sensations appear in the finger joints for the first time, they usually turn to a therapist who will prescribe initial examinations and pass them on to a closer specialist - a surgeon, neurologist, traumatologist, arthrologist, rheumatologist, orthopedic surgeon, reflexologist, osteopath, Endocrinologists, nutritionists, phthiatrists.

In any case, diagnosis begins with a visual inspection. After that, the specialist will prescribe standard laboratory blood and urine tests. They allow you to identify the inflammatory process in the body and evaluate some important indicators (albumin, globulin fractions, amount of iron).

Joint puncture is one of the laboratory methods. A needle is inserted into its cavity to collect synovial fluid. This test is also known as arthrocentesis.

Diagnosis of diseases for pain in the finger joints

Of the instrumental diagnostic methods, the following studies can be carried out depending on the circumstances:

  • X-ray.This method allows you to identify trauma, fractures, tumors and other damage to bone tissue.
  • ultrasound.This technique is used to examine soft tissues. In addition, you can use an ultrasound scan to check the condition of the vessels.
  • Tomography- computer, magnetic resonance tomography. CT is preferable to examining bone structures - the exam is similar to x-ray, but much more informative. MRI is more effective at examining soft tissues
  • Scintigraphy.This research is carried out using a radio display.
  • electrocardiogram.With such a diagnosis, you can check whether the pathology has affected the heart.

Treatment of pain in the fingers of the wrists

Every disease requires certain measures. In most cases, the treatment is based on drug therapy in combination with physiotherapy and special gymnastics. Some diseases require a special diet. Folk recipes can also be effective in the treatment of joint pathologies.

Drug therapy

Various drugs are the mainstay of treatment for most diseases.

Use the following medication for joint lesions:

  • Preparations of a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory group.Such funds are used for various inflammatory processes. Not only do they reduce inflammation, but also pain and fever. Such drugs are produced in various dosage forms - for topical use, oral administration, injection.
  • antibiotics.Such drugs are used both in the inflammatory process and in the infectious origin of the pathology. For the appointment of antibiotic therapy, the first step is to identify the causative agent of the disease, to determine its sensitivity to the drug.
  • glucocorticosteroids.These drugs are steroidal and anti-inflammatory. Your action will speed up the recovery process. They are also available in different dosage forms.
  • chondroprotectors.These drugs are used as part of a comprehensive treatment. They speed up the recovery process and prevent the pathology from recurring.
  • Analgesicscan be used for severe pain that cannot be tolerated. These can be either topical remedies in the form of a cream or gel, or drugs for oral administration or injections.
  • Immunosuppressants.Such drugs are used when the pathology is autoimmune in nature.

Medicines should only be prescribed by a doctor. Each patient needs an individual approach, so the set of drugs required can be radically different in different people, even for the same diseases.

Traditional medicine

Alternative medicine is used to treat a variety of diseases, including those that affect the joints.

The following folk recipes can be effective:

  • Melt propolis and mix it with vegetable oil - sunflower or corn oil is better. The resulting composition should be used as an ointment and rubbed into the affected areas.
  • Rub with honey and horseradish. The products must be mixed in equal proportions.
  • Dissolve a spoonful of mustard powder in half a glass of vodka and massage the affected areas with this composition.
  • Boil and knead the unpeeled potatoes and apply warm compresses to the inflamed areas.
  • Grind the onion to a mushy state and put a compress on the affected areas. You need to keep it for half an hour and repeat the process up to three times a day.
  • Tincture of purple flowers helps a lot. You need to fill in 3 tbsp. l. raw with a glass of vodka and let stand in the dark for a week. Rub the affected areas with a sieved mixture every day for at least half a month.
  • Cook the oat flakes so that they take on the consistency of jelly, allow to cool slightly, soak a bandage in it, apply it to the affected areas and fix with polyethylene. Remove the compress after an hour.
  • Dissolve 1 teaspoon in case of inflammation. Baking soda in milk and drink.
  • If the inflammatory process worsens, you can apply a fresh, honey-smeared cabbage leaf to the affected area.
  • The limbs with the affected joints can be kept in a bath with the addition of birch broth.
  • Heat salt or buckwheat in a pan, place in a cloth bag and attach to the affected area, leave to rest for a few hours.
  • It is useful to use bay leaf infusion inside. To do this, pour a glass of boiling water over a few leaves and insist.
  • Black radish juice with honey is useful. You need to take a spoonful of such a remedy three times a day.
  • With joint pathologies it is useful to use juices. A glass of cranberry or lingonberry juice, birch juice is enough per day.

Traditional medicine alone is appropriate in the early stages of pathology development. In other cases, it should be used in combination with conventional methods. Self-medication may not bring any result, and the pathology will only worsen during this period.


Physiotherapy is one of the components of a comprehensive approach to joint pathologies. It is done only as directed by a doctor. There are many methods of physiotherapy, so the appropriate option is selected individually.

Methods of treating pain in the joints of the fingers

The following procedures are suitable for various pathologies of the finger joints:

  • Magnetotherapy - constant, pulse;
  • electrophoresis;
  • UHF;
  • laser therapy;
  • phonophoresis;
  • Ozokerite Therapy;
  • cryotherapy;
  • galvanized;
  • diadynamic therapy;
  • oxygen therapy;
  • balneotherapy;
  • shock wave therapy;
  • ozone therapy.

Various therapeutic methods have been developed to restore joint mobility, restore blood circulation and muscle tone, improve metabolism and speed recovery.

Every method of physiotherapy has certain contraindications, so it is worthwhile to only resort to the methods prescribed by a doctor.

Finger gymnastics

Special finger exercises are part of a comprehensive treatment approach. Such gymnastics will allow you to restore blood circulation and mobility, relieve pain and have a general tonic effect.

Before doing gymnastics, you can warm up your hands if there are no contraindications. It is enough to dip your hands in warm water for 5 minutes or apply a heating pad to it.

The following exercises are effective for different joint pathologies:

  • Fists clenched and loosened. You need to gently clench your hand into a fist so that your thumb is over the rest. You need to stay in this position for 0. 5 to 1 minute, then open your fist and spread your fingers as far apart as possible. You need to do at least 4 reps for each hand.
  • Warming up your fingers. You need to put your palm on a hard surface and press firmly on it. Alternately, lift each finger and repeat 10 times for each hand.
  • contact. You need to twist your hand with the palm of your hand towards you, alternately connecting your fingertips with the tip of your thumb to form a circle. Each contact must be held for 0. 5-1 minutes. Do 4 or more repetitions for each hand.
  • thumb exercise. The palm of your hand should be on a firm surface. You need to move your thumb along and maximally take it away from the rest. In extreme cases, you need to linger for 0. 5 to 1 minute and then return to the starting position. Do 10-15 repetitions for each hand. Do the exercise every 2-3 days.
  • There is another thumb exercise. You need to twist your hand toward you with the palm of your hand, move your thumb to the side as far as possible, and then bend it so that its tip touches the base of the little finger. At this point, you need to linger for 0. 5-1 minutes. Do 4 or more repetitions per hand.
  • Brush stretch. You need to put your palm on the table and straighten the brush so that it becomes as flat as possible. You must stay in this position for 0. 5-1 minutes. Do 4 repetitions for each hand.
  • stretch your fingers. You need to rotate your hand toward you with the palm of your hand and bend your fingers so that they touch the skin at their bases. You need to stay in this position for 0. 5 to 1 minute, and then straighten your fingers smoothly. Do 4 or more repetitions per hand.
  • Extend your thumb. You need to rotate the hand toward you with the palm of your hand and bend your thumb so that its tip touches the base of the index finger. You need to stay in this position for 0. 5-1 minutes and do 4 reps.
  • There is another option to stretch the thumb. The starting position is the same. The thumb should be pulled to the base of the little finger, moving only the lower joint. In the extreme, linger for 0. 5 to 1 minute and repeat 4 times for each hand.
  • strengthening exercise. It is necessary to take a soft ball and squeeze it as much as possible, lingering on the extreme point for a few seconds. Do 10-15 repetitions for each hand. The exercise itself should be done every 2-3 days rather than every day to allow your hands to rest.
  • pinches. This exercise also requires a soft ball. It needs to be pinched so that there is one thumb on one side and all the others on the other. You must stay in this position for 0. 5-1 minutes. You need to do 10-15 reps for each hand. Exercise every 2-3 days.

In addition to such exercises, it is also useful to work with clay or plasticine. The material can simply be rolled and kneaded or processed into various crafts.

Finger exercises should not be performed if the pain is too severe. In this case, exercise can only hurt.


One of the treatment principles for various joint pathologies is proper nutrition.

The diet should be organized according to the following principles:

  • Weight normalization. This is necessary for deviations in any direction. When lipid metabolism is disturbed, lipids are deposited on the joints.
  • salt restriction. When there is too much of it in the body, the joints lose elasticity.
  • Avoid alcohol.
  • In gout, the focus should be on plant-based foods to alkalize the body.
  • Reduce your intake of animal protein. The amino acids it contains penetrate the synovia and cause inflammation and pain.
  • It is better to refuse meat broths or use secondary broths.
  • It is better not to use meat in its pure form, but as schnitzel, meatballs, meatballs.
  • If you have gout, you have to avoid fatty fish, caviar, cod liver oil, offal, eggs, butter, cream, fatty sour cream and nuts.
  • You should refuse candy, confectionery, cereals after pre-treatment, and instant products.
  • The diet must be saturated with vitamin C. To do this, you will need citrus fruits, blueberries, apples, peppers, black currants, Brussels sprouts and broccoli.


Every disease is easier to prevent than to cure. The following measures are appropriate as prophylaxis for various joint lesions of the fingers:

  • Proper nutrition. The diet should be rich in fresh fruits and vegetables, complex carbohydrates, lean proteins, and unsaturated fatty acids.
  • Adequate intake of vitamins and minerals. If there is not enough of it in the diet, then you should resort to funds from the pharmacy.
  • Correct drinking regime. Lack of fluids slows metabolism, which affects blood flow and nutrition to the joints, and decreases the volume of synovial fluid it contains. The drinking regime should be based on clean water without gas. On average, you need to drink 2 liters of fluids a day.
  • No bad habits.
  • Appropriate physical activity. It is important for the normal speed of metabolic processes in the body, good blood circulation, strengthening of the periarticular muscles and ligaments.
  • Special gymnastics for the fingers. It is especially important when the fingers are exposed to constant stress. This is common in some athletes and professions.
  • Competent alternation between activity and rest. Sleep should be complete.
  • Minimum load.
  • Regular medical examinations. You can identify the initial stage of the pathology or the prerequisites for its development, so that you can take the necessary measures in a timely manner.

Pain in the finger joints cannot be ignored. Even if there are no accompanying symptoms, such a phenomenon can be the first sign of serious pathology. An integrated approach is used in the treatment of joint disease. Therapeutic methods should be prescribed by a doctor, since each patient needs an individual approach.