A wrist bone spur rarely triggers any symptoms but some experience wrist pain. A bone spur is an abnormal growth on the bone surfaces. Generally, the spurs are not painful but can trigger discomfort if they grow against nerves and crush neighboring tissues.
In most cases, a wrist bone spur grows in a slow and stable manner. On the other hand, there are instances where the growth is rapid and unpredictable. In such instances, the doctor might suggest surgical intervention to eliminate the bone spurs.
What are the risk factors?
The usual risk factors for a wrist bone spur include the following:
- Advancing age
- Repeated strain on the wrist from engaging in high-impact sports
- Poor diet
- Excess body weight linked with obesity
- Degenerative joint disease such as osteoarthritis
- Genetic predisposition or family history of bone spurs
What are the indications?
In most cases, bone spurs will not trigger any discomfort or any serious symptoms. Nevertheless, there are some symptoms that might arise depending on the seriousness of the condition.
The usual symptoms that might arise include the following:
- Formation of a bony mass beneath the skin on the wrist
- Uncontrollable wrist pain
- Weakness, numbness or tingling of the wrist joint can occur if the adjacent nerves were pinched
- Diminished range of wrist motion
Management of a wrist bone spur
The treatment for a wrist bone spur is based on the seriousness of the symptoms.
The conservative measures for cases that involve mild to moderate wrist pain might include:
- Adequate rest from any activities that worsens the condition must be observed. The individual is instructed to refrain from physical activities until the symptoms settle.
- Medications such as non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) can be given as part of treatment for a wrist bone spur which helps lessen the pain and swelling.
- Corticosteroid injections can provide momentary relief to the symptoms as well as improve the range of motion.
- Physical therapy can help improve strength and flexibility in the wrist to lessen the discomfort as well as reduce the pressure on the nerves.
In case the conservative measures are not effective in relieving the discomfort caused by a wrist bone spur, surgery is an option. The commonly performed surgical procedure is bone spur removal.