Most patients experience pain at the side of the wrist, near the base of the thumb. It usually occurs after recent increased activity involving the wrist and hand. It begins as an aching sensation initially and progresses to a point when any movement of the wrist or thumb produces sharp pain in the affected area. That area of the wrist may become swollen at times. Some may experience difficulty with activities that involve pinching, lifting the thumb or turning the wrist (e.g. wringing towel, cutting with scissors, stapling).
Doctors will first try non-surgical methods of treatment, such as making you wear a splint, prescribing anti-inflammatory medication orally, or by giving you an injection of steroids.