Why would I need hand surgery?

Hand Surgery

Hand Surgery Q & A

Why would I need hand surgery?

You may need hand surgery to treat a disease that impairs the use of your hand, causes pain, or decreases flexibility and mobility in your wrist and fingers. One of the most common reasons you may need hand surgery is to alleviate the pain of carpal tunnel syndrome.

Carpal tunnel syndrome is a painful condition in which the median nerve that runs through your wrist and hand becomes compressed. Carpal tunnel release surgery relieves the pressure on your median nerve so you can regain the function of your hand and reduce painful symptoms.

Many men and women seek hand surgery to treat rheumatoid arthritis, a disease that causes severe inflammation in the joints. If your fingers become deformed or you have impaired mobility, hand surgery can help relieve the pain and restore movement.

You may also need hand surgery to:

  • Correct sports injuries involving your hand or wrist
  • Repair a tendon
  • Repair a nerve in your hand or wrist
  • Replace a joint in your fingers

Some injuries and conditions respond well to physical therapy; not all of them require surgery.

What is recovery like after hand surgery?

Recovery after hand surgery depends on your specific condition or the severity of your injury. Some conditions are treatable with arthroscopic hand surgery, a less invasive procedure than open surgery, so recovery time is quicker and there are fewer risks involved.

As you recover, you may need to wear a bandage or splint to temporarily immobilize your hand, wrist, and fingers. You may also benefit from physical therapy and specific exercises designed to help you regain mobility, flexibility, and strength.

Orthopedic Center for Sports Medicine provides dedicated on-site physical therapists and a rehabilitation facility to help you recover as efficiently and thoroughly as possible. Your surgeon communicates your specific needs to the physical therapy team, so you get the individualized care you need as you recover.

Hand surgery may be your first step on the road to recovering the full function of your hand without pain or limitations.

Am I a good candidate for hand surgery?

Hand surgery can benefit people of all ages, and your recovery is typically easier if you’re a non-smoker and you don’t have any preexisting medical conditions that may inhibit healing.

As long as you follow your surgeon’s and physical therapist’s instructions and keep a positive outlook, you may be an ideal candidate for hand surgery that allows you to live a more active lifestyle without pain. 

To learn more about hand surgery, call Orthopedic Center for Sports Medicine at 504-271-5319 or request an appointment online at:


Nick Pappas III, M.D. Nick Pappas III, M.D. Nicholas Pappas III, MD is a board-certified orthopedic surgeon with a Certificate of Added Qualifications (CAQ) in hand surgery who specializes in various hand and upper extremity conditions. He is the newest member of the Orthopedic Center for Sports Medicine team and founder of NOLA Hand Surgery (nolahandsurgery.com) Dr. Pappas currently serves as a Clinical Assistant Professor of Orthopedic Surgery at both Tulane University and Louisiana State University. He is also a member of the American Society for Surgery of the Hand and serves as a consultant reviewer for the prestigious Journal of Hand Surgery, American. He has an active interest in clinical research with over 30 peer-reviewed publications and multiple textbook chapters to his credit.

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