What are Complex Instabilities?

23 August 2017

Complex instabilities are instabilities that occur in your wrist as a result of injury to the ligaments binding your carpal bones together. As this group of conditions can be misdiagnosed, you might have to suffer for months before the true source of the pain is revealed. At Wrist Supports, we've created a guide outlining all you need to know about the condition, including the signs and symptoms you should look out for.

What are Complex Instabilities?

The wrist is often referred to as a "complex" and is made up of eight carpal bones. If these bones move out of place or the ligaments between each bone is damaged or torn, this can cause instabilities in the wrist. If left untreated, instabilities in the wrist complex can cause deterioration of the joint. Instabilities include the following:

What Causes Complex Instabilities?

There are a number of different reasons you might develop a complex instability, though most of these are related to overusing your wrist or continuous impact. If you play sports or have a demanding job, you're more likely to suffer from complex instabilities.

Acute injuries like falling off your bike can also cause instability in the area, particularly if you fall awkwardly on your wrist. This kind of sudden trauma can lead to a chronic injury if the ligament tear is not found and treated quickly by a healthcare professional. Chronic injury can cause further deterioration and instability of the joint as the ligament becomes more worn.

Signs and Symptoms of Wrist Instabilities

Complex instabilities can cause long-term pain in your wrist until the condition is treated. You might also suffer from weakness in the area and this will often prevent your from performing daily activities. Other signs include:

  • Arthritis in area if not treated early
  • Clicking noise when "waving" hand with wrist still
  • Stiffness in hand and wrist

Treatment Options

If your wrist instability is caused by a previous trauma to the area and the ligaments between your carpal bones have become worn, you might need surgery to repair or replace the ligaments. This will help prevent the wrist from becoming more unstable. However, wrist weakness will not heal by itself; instead, you must perform strengthening exercises to improve your grip and tone your muscles in the area. Hand rehabilitation aids also nurse your hand and arm to its original strength.

Using a wrist support can help with complex instabilities as they stabilise and immobilise the area. These will only be effective, however, if the underlying cause of the condition has been dealt with. Supports are useful before surgery to prevent further damage and after surgery to stabilise the area while it heals. Braces with an adjustable splint or stay can work wonders in ensuring your wrist remains in a neutral position.

Complex Instabilities at Wrist Supports

Here at Wrist Supports, we understand how painful and infuriating having an unstable wrist can be; a seemingly harmless fall can lead to months of pain and rehabilitation. Wrist supports can help protect the area from further injury and irritation. We've created a range of products that we think will truly help treat your complex instability. Click the button below to view the full range.


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