Thumb Osteoarthritis

EleanorJP Member Posts: 8
edited 28. Nov 2023, 14:09 in Living with arthritis

Hi Everyone.

I’ve recently been diagnosed with osteoarthritis in CMC joint although I suspect I’ve had symptoms for a long time. I approached the doctor because I was starting to a considerable amount of pain when carrying out my job. Over the last couple of weeks, the pain seems to have escalated and driving is also an issue (I have a 70 mile round trip to work). Current treatment is conservative management- wearing a splint - but I can’t wear for certain aspects of my job (clinical role). On the verge of going off sick but otherwise I’m totally well. If I go off, I’m really letting my team down when we’re already short-staffed. I also know this is early stages. The surgeon said to avoid activities that hurt which is impossible - I’m unsure if this will hasten the progress.

Any suggestions / advice for coping?


  • chrisb
    chrisb Moderator Posts: 706

    Hi @EleanorJP and welcome to the versus arthritis forum.

    I see that you’ve recently been diagnosed with OA in the CMC joint which is painful and hindering your ability to do your job. Advice from your doctor is to wear a splint but this is not practical for certain aspects of your job. You don’t want to let your colleagues down by going off sick but are worried that continuing as you are will make your symptoms worse. A difficult situation.

    The forum is certainly the right place to come to share your dilemma and seek advice from others who have found themselves in a similar position and I’m sure you’ll receive some useful feedback.

    In the interim you may find these links of useful:

    Please do have a look around the rest of the community and see if there are any tips for you, maybe in the Living in Arthritis area. 

    Best Wishes

    ChrisB (Moderator)

    Need more help - call our Helpline on 0800 5200 520 Monday to Friday 9am to 6pm

  • EleanorJP
    EleanorJP Member Posts: 8

    Thanks Chris. Carpal tunnel has been eliminated. With regard to joint protection, it’s not possible in my clinical role, I use my thumbs repetitively - no other option for what I do.

    I was hoping to reduce my hours in next couple of years and drop a grade (so less responsibility) - winding down before retiring. However that plan would mean more clinical work so I’m considering retiring altogether.