Very Painful Swollen Hands, Stiff In The Morning, So Large I Can Not Bend My Fingers, What Is This?

10 Answers

Matthew Crist Profile
Matthew Crist answered
There are a number of things that could cause your hands to swell and stiffen in the morning. The most likely cause is rheumatoid arthritis. This is the swelling of the joints on both sides of the body, and can sometimes act as a mirror image. Rheumatoid arthritis affects about 1% of the population and the cause of it is unknown. There are various treatments available to ease the pain and discomfort, ranging from anti-inflammatory drugs to occupational therapy.
Another possibility is carpal tunnel syndrome. This is when the tissues around the wrist stiffen up to such an extent that the fingers and hands become numb and difficult to move. Carpal tunnel syndrome is caused by, amongst other things, rheumatoid arthritis in the wrist joint; repeated movement of the wrist in the same direction (for example, using a screwdriver), and diabetes. Treatment varies as to what is causing the syndrome but can be medicinal or non-medicinal.
Some examples of treatment include simply resting the hands and wrists for longer periods, wearing wrist splints or, in extreme cases, surgery. This surgery involves cutting the carpal ligament to make more space for the nerves and ligaments in the carpal tunnel. The surgery is performed under a local anaesthetic. Steroid injections into the carpal ligament can also ease the discomfort and improve the movement of the wrist, hands and fingers.
There are theories that the swelling of the hands and stiffness in the fingers is caused by too much protein, and not enough carbohydrate in the diet. Because of the various possibilities surrounding these symptoms the best course of action would be to visit a doctor to ensure that the correct treatments can be administered.
Anonymous Profile
Anonymous answered
If different left to right, or just one hand (assuming no injury or local inflammation or arthritis) you have a blockage...either vein or lymph nodes...either are excellent reasons to see your MD!Swelling the same in both hands?, (but not feet or at least less noticeable in feet)  May affect face around eyes too... Water retention...too much salt, not enough water in diet, kidney failure.Bottom line...in my experience doctors don't care too much about it, especially if elderly.  A diuretic like hydrochlorothiazide (cheap, safe and effective by the way) may be prescribed...and will help symptoms.  But there has to be a reason that they swell now and didn't before!!  Md's don't seem to be too interested in finding out!Oh well, thank god for the net!  In my case  cutting out wheat, sugar and caffiene and limiting dairy, supplementing with vitamin C (3 grams a day) loads of garlic (odourless capsules) as much water as I can drink, generous use of psyllium fiber, a CPAP machine for obstructive sleep apnea, blood pressure meds, eating only fresh fruits and veg, raw almonds, lean fish and eggs...and as easy as that the swelling is gone!So my advice is, eat right, (natural high fiber food, no salt) drink as much water as you can and see what happens.  If still a problem...see your doctor..
Aida Maria Profile
Aida Maria answered
I have something similar and they did all kinds of tests that came out normal.( Neurology, Rheumatology, X-Rays & Blood work.) If all those come out normal you can possibly have Fibromyalgia...This is what they say I have. The Rheumatologist said that if I had swelling it could be Rheumatoid Arthritis. Check yourself for that...My pain is mostly in the middle of the night till morning when I take a hot shower...until then I can't close my hands without experiencing pain in my fingers. I also have pain in my back, neck, knees & feet...so you have to eliminate other possibilities first. Good luck.
patrick mc mullan Profile
It could be several conditions. The one that springs to mind is carpal tunnel syndrome. The elasticated tissues around the wrist tighten up and cause an obstruction resulting in swelling and numbness. Open your hand palm upwards. Now using your other hand sharply tap your wrist around the pulse site. If you experience a feeling like a little electric shock travelling up to your fingers then that's probably carpal tunnel. :)
Anonymous Profile
Anonymous answered
I have the same problem....only at night and when I wake up in the morning.  I have only had this problem with my swollen fingers since I went on diet 3 months ago, eating a lot more protein than I normally did.  I lost weight, but have now been battling with this finger problem. I have a funny feeling that it could be too much protein in the diet. I was eating and exercising on more protein and not enough carbohydrates.I have googled it and it seems that there is a link between too much protein and arthritis symptoms.
kirsten mcquaker Profile
Hi guys..I've been suffering with the same problem. It's just my right fingers and it's starting to feel like I'm wearing a boxing glove. Very tight feeling and can't grip properly. I'm currently having tests for swollen lymph nodes in my neck and I'm curious about the earlier answer referring to possible lymph blockage. Making me wonder if I have more enlarged nodes that I can't feel. I'm getting very frustrated with it and to be honest it looks awful :O( my fingers are twice the size of the other hand..nice! Hope the tests come up with something. Xx
thanked the writer.
Anonymous
Anonymous commented
I have same prob, middle finger and ring finger on both hands, I lifted a lot and was on high protein intake diet. Didn't have problems when I was on mass gainer that had many fish products in it though!
Michelle New Zealand Profile
Well how old are you because the first thing that came to my mind is that you have Arthritis
Anonymous Profile
Anonymous answered
Hi everyone.  I just went to the doctor yesterday for a med check and because I can't sleep at night due to the pain in my back and legs.  I am on several different medications for di-generative disk disease.  About 3 months ago I started waking up with not being able to move my fingers on both hands because the pain was awful.  I asked him about it and he examined my fingers and said oh, you have arthritis.  He prescribed another medication called tizanidine to take at bedtime.  I just started last night and haven't noticed any changes yet.  He did say this medicine should work for my back pain, helping me sleep and my arthritis in my fingers.  Will let you know if this works,
Lucíana Matías Profile
I have been waking up with I call it "Robot Hands" my hands are so stiff they open quickly and close quickly..it hurts so bad, the numbness is in both hands but my right hands gets it worse...I beleive I do have carpal tunnel...and it seems to be worse if I drink a lot of soda of eat badly the night before...Ive spoken to my Dr. He kind of blows me off..I don't know what to do.
Anonymous Profile
Anonymous answered
Ive got the same thing! Just looking up on the internet, for what it might be! If you know, let me know please! My doctors aren't open till Monday and my hands are agony!

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