Evaluation of a grip-strengthening algorithm for the initial treatment of chronic, nonspecific wrist pain in adolescents

Review written by Dr Ian Gatt info

Key Points

  1. Nonspecific wrist pain in adolescents can be a common problem, yet difficult to assess and manage especially in the absence of a confirmed diagnosis.
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Wrist pain can be a common ailment among adolescents presenting for examination. In many cases, history, physical examination, and scans provide a specific aetiology of the pain; such as a fracture, ligamentous or triangular fibrocartilage complex injury, tenosynovitis, or arthritis. For such diagnoses, specific evaluation and treatment methods are established.

However, a common presentation appears global, nonspecific wrist pain with no aetiology identified from either physical examination and/or radiographic findings. This clinical presentation can be challenging towards appropriate management (1).

The purpose of this retrospective study was to review patient-reported outcomes of a treatment algorithm, to assess whether the use of this algorithm can be effective to improve pain and function, whilst identifying those that require further intervention.

Wrist pain can be a common ailment among adolescents presenting for examination.
When considering function in patients with wrist pain, using simple objective measurements can definitely be useful in monitoring the progression of difficult cases.


  • All data of patients, between 10 to 18 years of age, presenting to occupational therapy seeking treatment for acute or chronic nonspecific wrist pain between 2011 and 2016 were queried retrospectively.
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