Stephen J. Schueler, M.D.

Overview Risk Factors Symptoms Evaluation Treatment specialist Home Care pain in adults pain in children warning signs Underlying Cause Anatomy

Wrist Pain Home Care

Home care for wrist pain includes:

  • Apply a cold compress:
    • Wrap ice in a moist hand towel. Do not apply ice directly to the skin.
    • Apply for 20-30 minutes, every 1-2 hours, for the first few days.
  • Apply warm compresses after two days.
  • Rest:
    • Use an elastic wrap on the wrist as directed.
  • Use a wrist splint as directed.
  • With some wrist injuries you may wish to wear a sling for comfort:
    • Long term immobilization in a sling can lead to frozen shoulder.
    • If you wear a shoulder sling for longer than two weeks make sure you perform shoulder range of motion exercises twice a day to avoid frozen shoulder.
  • Apply nonprescription pain rubs:
    • ArthriCare
    • Arthritis Pain Relieving Rub
    • Aspercreme
    • Ben-Gay
    • Capzasin-HP
    • Sportscreme
  • Acetaminophen for pain
  • Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medications for pain:
  • Take prescribed medications as directed:
    • Don't skip doses of your medication. This makes them less effective.
    • Be aware of the common side effects that may be caused by your medication.

Wrist Pain Pain in Adults

Medications commonly used to control pain and inflammation in adults with wrist pain include:


Acetaminophen
  • Acetaminophen decreases fever and pain, but does not help inflammation.
  • Adult dosing is 2 regular strength (325 mg) every 4 hours or 2 extra-strength (500 mg) every 6 hours.
  • Maximum dose is 4,000 mg per day.
  • Avoid this drug if you have alcoholism, liver disease or an allergy to the drug. See the package instructions.
  • Common brand names include Tylenol, Panadol, and many others.

Aspirin

Ibuprofen

Naproxen

Ketoprofen

NSAID Precautions

Wrist Pain Pain in Children

Common medications used at home for children with wrist pain include:


Aspirin and most of the other nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDS) are not used in children except under a doctor's care.

Acetaminophen
  • Acetaminophen decreases fever and pain, but does not help inflammation.
  • Dosing is 10-15 mg per kilogram (5-7 mg per pound) of body weight every 4-6 hours, up to the adult dose.
  • Do not exceed the maximum daily dose.
  • Acetaminophen products come in various strengths. Always follow the package instructions.
  • Avoid this drug in children with liver disease or an allergy to acetaminophen.
  • Common acetaminophen products include Tylenol, Panadol and many others.

Ibuprofen

Naproxen

Wrist Pain Warning Signs

Notify your doctor if you have wrist pain and any of the following:

Continue to Wrist Pain Underlying Cause

Last Updated: Jun 7, 2011 References
Authors: Stephen J. Schueler, MD; John H. Beckett, MD; D. Scott Gettings, MD
Copyright DSHI Systems, Inc. Powered by: FreeMD - Your Virtual Doctor

PubMed Wrist Pain References
  1. Helliwell PS. Regional musculoskeletal pain. The elbow, forearm, wrist and hand. Baillieres Best Pract Res Clin Rheumatol. 1999 Jun;13(2):311-28. [10952866]
  2. Nagle DJ. Evaluation of chronic wrist pain. J Am Acad Orthop Surg. 2000 Jan-Feb;8(1):45-55. [10666652]
  3. Palmer KT. Regional musculoskeletal conditions: pain in the forearm, wrist and hand. Best Pract Res Clin Rheumatol. 2003 Feb;17(1):113-35. [12659824]
  4. Shin AY, Deitch MA, Sachar K, Boyer MI. Ulnar-sided wrist pain: diagnosis and treatment. Instr Course Lect. 2005;54:115-28. [1594843]
FreeMD is provided for information purposes only and should not be used as a substitute for evaluation and treatment by a physician. Please review our terms of use.