Wrist stiffness and weakness is quite common to experience following wrist immobilization. Have you had an injury or surgery to your wrist requiring a cast or immobilization? When the cast is removed, it is normal to think your wrist function will also be immediately back to normal. But often the muscle weakness as well as scar tissue buildup can reduce you wrist mobility.
The wrist joint is made up of 8 small bones (called carpal bones), and the 2 bones in your forearm. How these bones move on each other allow you to bend and rotate your wrist. When you bend your wrist forward (flexion) or backwards (extension), the carpal bones glide accordingly across each other and the forearm bones to allow the movement to happen.
With immobilization (being in a cast), the carpals will become stuck causing the wrist to have limited mobility.
A physiotherapist will have the knowledge and tools to mobilize the joint to restore the normal movement. In their assessment, they will be able to determine which of the 8 carpal bones are stiff and use specific manual techniques to help reduce scar tissue and mobilize appropriately. This will allow for a restoration of your pre-injury function and mobility. Home exercises will be provided to maintain this new range of motion.
Contact our team of skilled physiotherapists if you feel you are experiencing reduced range of motion after you have been in a cast or brace.