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Osteoarthritis of the thumb may occur late in life or after several and/or severe thumb injuries. The primary joint involved is located at the base of the thumb, the carpometacarpal joint otherwise referred to as the CMC. Over time chronic and repeated swelling degrades cartilage and connective tissues leading to a reduction of the intermediary between bones that make up the CMC joint. If left untreated bone on bone grinding may occur causing thumb joint pain and displacement. The thumb will move further out of normal position, increased pain stiffness and bony changes will result. As the body attempts to heal itself, but because the joint is damaged and out of position, bone spurs may occur causing additional pain. Splinting is a recommended first step to maintain optimal alignment and prevent symptoms caused by thumb arthritis.
The McKie Thumb Arthritis Splint uses a flexible neoprene that helps by pushing the lateral edge of the proximal metacarpal distally in order realign the CMC joint. A second supportive force is applied by attaching the strap through the web space along the radial side of the MCP. These 2 forces create a lever-like action that positions the joint back in its normal, comfortable state. The added support reduces thumb pain and inflammation and may assist during rehabilitation if intervention is applied at an early enough stage. It is recommended to use the splint as soon as the issue is discovered to help prevent further injury from occurring. Splinting is also recommended, if the user anticipates using one’s hands repeatedly (i.e., gardening, driving long distances), or any activity requiring repeated grip and pinch motions. Consult your medical professional for further assistance.
If you're experiencing severe arthritic symptoms, our Thumb Splint featuring a short dorsal stay could potentially be the optimal solution. It provides additional support with a rigid moldable plastic stay.
Place Thumb into hole and pull the splint until it fits around the thumb.
Wrap strap around the wrist, then back towards the thumb.
Important - The strap needs to go around the base of the thumb joint. This may take a few tries to find the exact placement that works best for you.
With tension, wrap the remaining strap up through the space between the thumb and index finger followed by around the thumb creating support that levers the lower thumb joint back into a normal comfortable position.
At this point the lower thumb joint should feel secure and comfortably positioned. If no change is noticed try adjusting strap location at the base of the thumb and the amount of tension applied. Adjust tension to where the lower thumb joint feels secure but does not cut off circulation. Hands and arthritic condition varies person to person. It is best to try wrapping strap multiple ways to find the best position.
Arthritis thumb splint for management of joint pain in thumb.
See our sizing charts with sizing instructions here: "SIZING CHARTS"
Designed to provide pain relief from arthritis in the thumb joints.
The Mckie adult thumb splint features streamlined design dynamically assists grasp.
Minimal palmar coverage allows the hand to function more normally -- to feel and manipulate objects.
The thumb splint can be fastened either to support the joint at the base of the thumb (CMC arthritis and pain at the base of the thumb) or the it can be fastened to address neurological issues such as weakness or spasticity.
Made from 1.5 mm thick, washable, nylon-covered neoprene.
The smooth side nylon thumb is worn against the skin. The outer fabric is a closed loop Nylon fabric which allows attachment of the hook tape anywhere on the splint, thus making it adaptable to a variety of applications.
Extra hook tape is available for purchase. Velcro® brand as well as other hook tape brands are used in the manufacture of the McKie® Thumb Splint.
Sizing, longer strapping, lengthened or shortened thumb, and plastic web stay.
Use A and B measurements to determine which size splint you should order.
Measure to the 1/10th of a centimeter the circumference of the far or distal thumb joint.
Measure to the 1/10th of a centimeter the distance on the palm from the distal thumb joint to the center of the wrist crease.
Measure from the distal thumb crease to the bottom of the web space.
On the appropriate chart (see links below), find the the square where Measurement A and Measurement B meet. The square should fall within a bold area corresponding to the correct size. If Neonatal use only Measurement A an Neonatal Sizing and refer to the neonatal chart for neonatal sizing.
Note splint size and left or right hand, as this is required when ordering. If ordering offline, the catalog number for the above example would be P5-L (left hand) or P5-R (right hand).
To assure the best fit, use of a sizing kit is recommended. If a sizing kit is unavailable, follow the directions above. Neonatal sizes are suitable for very small or prematurely born infants. Pediatric sizes are suitable for children from about 3 months to 6-10 years. Older children and adults need adult sizes. When figuring sizes, it is important to use a centimeter tape measure.
When hand sizes fall outside the standard sizes provided, you may call or choose the custom options when ordering. To order a custom size we will need measurements A, B & F. Select or specify whether you need a longer strap, larger thumb piece or added reinforcement at the web space. Custom cut longer, larger supinator straps are also available.
Step 1: Put the thumb through the thumb hole. Orient the splint so that the stitching follows the crest of the web between thumb and index finger. Snug to fit comfortably. Draw the strap of the splint at an angle so that it drops below the corner of the palm. (For medical personnel, it sits below the pisiform bone). Pull the split strap so it continues around the back of the hand all the way around again to the palm side.
Step 2: Depending on your intent, you can attach the hook tape in either of 2 ways:
Option A: If you are experiencing thumb pain or arthritis at the base of the thumb (C-M-C joint), direct the pull of the strap up into the base of the thumb metacarpal as illustrated.
Option B: If you are attempting to improve grasp quality, attach the hook tape to put mild pressure on the head of the thumb metacarpal.
Step 1: To attach supinator strap, undo strap from thumb splint. Reattach thumb splint over supinator strap. (figure 3)
Step 2: Wind one turn around forearm, then one turn behind elbow. Attach wider, squared hook tape end of strap to itself above elbow (figure 4). The splint is designed to assist forearm extension, so supinator strap must cut across the back of elbow.
Step 3: Once splint is in place, passively turn forearm palm up (supination) and slightly extend wrist (figure 5). Make any necessary adjustments to supinator strap to ensure a snug fit. The attachment above the elbow, while snug, should be comfortable, balancing good coloration of the hand with some pull from the strap.
Step 4: Finally, check the hand splint and, if necessary, rotate it to ensure the thumb is positioned to oppose fingers.
Always follow precautions on label regarding splint application and wear.
Both the strap of the Thumb Splint and the Adjustable Supinator Strap may be shortened to accommodate different size hands or to compensate for some loss of elasticity in the straps that occurs over time.
If after trying the on the splint, the splint strap and velcro protrude beyond the thumb, cut strap and/or hook tape to fit the hand.
The squared end of the supinator strap may be cut to fit a shorter or narrower forearm. Attach free piece of hook tape to the squared end of strap.
All McKie Thumb Splints and Supinator Straps are made of washable, 1.5 mm fabric-covered neoprene. Outer fabric is looped Nylon which allows attachment of hook tape anywhere on the splints . All splints are available in 6 colors, black, navy blue, red, royal blue, pink and tan. “Decorated” splints are available in sizes P4, P5 and P6.
Supination is the forearm motion that turns the palm up. Whether child or adult, it is needed for most activities of daily living including eating, cup holding, dressing, bathing, combing hair, brushing teeth and holding a pencil. Control of supination develops very early when infants begin to explore all sides of objects. It can be lost or fail to develop as a result of neurological injury.