What is Intersection Syndrome?

Intersection syndrome refers to the inflammation of the radial (side nearest the thumb) wrist extensor tendons. The condition is caused by overuse of the wrist during athletics or activities that involve lots of wrist movement, such as:

  • Typing
  • Writing
  • Playing musical instruments
  • Skiing
  • Rowing
  • Weightlifting

Regardless of the cause, intersection syndrome can be effectively treated using nonsurgical treatment options.

How is Intersection Syndrome Treated?

Treatment may include any, all, or any combination of the following:

  1. Activity modification. Slowing down or stopping activities that produce pain.
  2. Splinting or bracing. A splint or brace helps hold the wrist is a neutral position.
  3. Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs). Over-the-counter and prescription medications that decrease inflammation and pain.
  4. Cortisone injections. Anti-inflammatory medication is injected into the affected area.
  5. Hand therapy. Different types of treatment modalities and stretching and strengthening exercises.

When patients adhere to the treatment plan prescribed by their orthopedic hand specialist, they can expect to see a steady decrease in pain that is caused by intersection syndrome.