Irish Journal of Medical Science

, Volume 162, Issue 4, pp 143–144 | Cite as

Treatment of rheumatoid hand synovitis with a regional block technique

  • C. J. McCarthy
  • M. Regan
  • R. J. Coughlan


This study reports a novel technique for treating painful rheumatoid hand synovitis using a regional block techique.

Nine patients with symptomatic rheumatoid hand synovitis were treated. Assessments of symptoms, grip strength and synovial swelling were made in each hand before the injection, and at 1 and 4 weeks after the procedure. A sphygmomanometer cuff was inflated, on the side of the patients most symptomatic hand, to 220mmHg and a solution of hydrocortisone sodium succinate 50mgs and lignocaine 10mls 0.5% was injected intravenously. The cuff was deflated slowly after 20 minutes.

The injected hand improved symptomatically in 7 patients at 1 week, and further improvement was reported in 6 of these 7 at 1 month. Mean grip strength increased significantly in the injected hand both at 1 week (p=0.01) and 1 month (p=0.018). There was no change in the other hand.

This technique is safe, reduced hand pain and improved grip strength in these patients with rheumatoid hand synovitis.


Synovitis Grip Strength Lignocaine Hand Function Measure Grip Strength 
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Copyright information

© Springer 1993

Authors and Affiliations

  • C. J. McCarthy
    • 1
  • M. Regan
    • 1
  • R. J. Coughlan
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of RheumatologyMater HospitalDublin 7Ireland

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