Upper Extremity Specialist

David Liao, DO -  - Orthopaedic Surgeon

Dr. David Liao Orthopaedic Center, LLC

David Liao, DO

Orthopaedic Surgeon located in Hunt County, Greenville, TX & Rockwall County, Royse City, TX

Carpal tunnel syndrome, tendinitis, and ganglion cysts are all upper extremity conditions. David Liao, DO of Dr. David Liao Orthopaedic Center, LLC, is an orthopaedic surgeon who specializes in treating various issues in the shoulder, arm, and hand. With two Texas locations -- Greenville in Hunt County and Royse City in Rockwall County -- you can get relief from these painful, chronic conditions. Dr. Liao welcomes you to call the office to schedule a consultation to learn more about effective treatment options.

Upper Extremity Q & A

by David Liao, DO

What is a rotator cuff tear and how is it treated?

A rotator cuff is the thick collection of muscles and tendons around the shoulder joint that holds your arm firmly in its socket and helps you lift and rotate your arm. Rotator cuff tears are quite common. They are often the result of repetitive movements. For example, athletes who play baseball, tennis, or volleyball are especially prone to rotator cuff injuries, as are those who perform certain jobs, like painting, that require repetitive shoulder movements. Patients who don’t respond to conservative treatment like physical therapy, are candidates for rotator cuff surgery. Surgery generally entails re-attaching the tendon to the head of the humerus (upper arm bone). However, in instances of a partial tear, only a trimming procedure called a debridement may be necessary.

What is carpal tunnel syndrome and how is it treated?

Carpal tunnel syndrome is a painful condition of the median nerve and tendons in your hand. When the passageway of your wrist and hand in which the nerve and tendons run through gets injured or is too tight, swelling puts pressure on the nerve. Most men and women with this syndrome feel pain, tingling, and numbness in their hands that gets progressively worse if not treated.

If you don’t seek treatment for carpal tunnel syndrome, it can get progressively worse, and you can even lose function in your fingers. Dr. Liao may recommend carpal tunnel release surgery in which he cuts the ligament that’s pressing down on the median nerve. After releasing that ligament, the nerve and tendons have more room, relieving pain and other symptoms so you regain function.

What is trigger finger?

Trigger finger occurs when one finger gets stuck in a bent position. Your finger may suddenly bend or straighten out, as if you’re pulling or releasing a trigger -- hence the name. Inflammation around the tendon in your finger can cause it to stay locked in a bent position.

Trigger finger is often caused by repetitive motions like gripping something over and over as part of your job or a hobby. It can also occur as a result of certain health issues, such as diabetes or rheumatoid arthritis.

When other less invasive therapies don’t relieve the symptoms, Dr. Liao may recommend trigger finger release surgery. During this procedure, he makes a small incision near the base of the finger opens the restricted section of your tendon, which releases your finger.

What is tendinitis?

A common upper extremity condition among gardeners, golfers, carpenters, and those who participate in several other sports and activities, is tendinitis. Tendinitis is the irritation of a tendon as a result of repetitive motions, or it may occur from a sudden injury. It’s often painful and may limit your range of motion.

Tendinitis can happen anywhere in your body where a tendon connects a bone to a muscle, but it commonly occurs at the base of your thumb, elbow, shoulder, hip, or knee.

What are ganglion cysts?

Although the cause isn’t known, ganglion cysts -- fluid-filled lumps that rise out of a joint -- are most common among men and women between 15 and 40. Typically, a ganglion cyst forms around the joint on the back of your wrist and it isn’t cancerous or harmful. Many don’t require treatment at all, as the cysts go away on their own.

However, if a cyst becomes painful or interferes with the movement of your joint, Dr. Liao performs an aspiration procedure in which he drains the fluid. If the ganglion cyst returns, surgical removal may be a good option.

What are nerve transpositions?

A nerve transposition refers to a procedure that involves the ulnar nerve, which runs from your neck through your arm and all the way down to your hand. This nerve can become compressed, often at your elbow, causing numbness and tingling in your hand.

When nonsurgical treatments like exercises or bracing don’t relieve your symptoms, Dr. Liao may recommend an ulnar nerve transposition. In this procedure, he surgically moves your nerve in order to relieve the pressure on it. You can call the office to see Dr. Liao about treatment options for any of these upper extremity conditions.