Which physical findings suggest inflammatory flexor tenosynovitis?

Updated: Nov 22, 2019
  • Author: Mark R Foster, MD, PhD, FACS; Chief Editor: Harris Gellman, MD  more...
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Inflammatory FT usually is the result of an underlying disease process. Presentation is indolent but progressive if therapy is not initiated. Similar findings to those found in infectious FT eventually present. In inflammatory FT, swelling is the most common initial finding. The hallmark of inflammatory FT is a difference in active, versus passive, flexion. As the tissue expands and impingement occurs, pain and restricted motion ensue. Delayed presentations can have the appearance of fulminant FT with all Kanavel signs or may involve tendon rupture if the patient delays seeking treatment long enough.

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