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Gaming Injuries

What are gaming injuries?

Gaming injuries tend to be more harmful than most people think since they are due to repetitive movement of the fingers, hands, wrists, or elbows. Some injuries are also related to posture. Some of the most common injuries are from holding a controller or gliding across a keyboard, resulting in strains in the hands, wrists, forearms, and elbows. Furthermore, some gamers can develop worse symptoms depending on the hours they put into gaming and their posture. Some virtual reality headsets restrict visibility and result in hand injuries from contact with furniture, walls, and hitting objects.   Gaming on the phone can also cause similar injuries with repetitive use as does use of a computer or controller

What are the most common gaming injuries?

  • Gamer’s thumb: The thumbs are heavily used when using a controller, and the ligaments in the thumb are affected by continued, repetitive movement. Patients can develop gamekeeper’s thumb or De Quervain’s Tendonitis.

  • Gamer’s wrist: The most common wrist injury is from resting the wrist on a desk for long periods. Due to this, the tendon can become irritated and inflamed, which can cause carpal tunnel syndrome. 

  • Gamer’s elbow: The elbow is often held in a bent position which can add stress on the tendons of the elbow. The extensor tendons in the elbow control the wrist and fingers, so patients often experience discomfort in the hands. If the pain is on the outer side (thumb side) of the elbow, it is a sign of tennis elbow. With pain on the inner side (pinky finger side) of the elbow, it is indicative of golfer’s elbow.

When do gaming injuries require surgery?

Dr. Azouz will start with a physical exam to determine which tendons or ligaments are affected. He may also review x-ray images to check the alignment of the bones. Conservative measures, including anti-inflammatory medications, rest, ice, splints, and physical therapy, can help. However, if symptoms persist, surgery is recommended to prevent worsening injuries, relieve pain, and regain function. 

How are surgeries for gaming injuries performed?

The procedure will depend on the specific injury. Dr. Azouz can repair any damaged ligaments, tendons, or nerves that can cause pain, swelling, or discomfort. 

What is the anesthesia for a gaming injury surgery?

Dr. Azouz will use sedation with local anesthesia for the majority of hand surgeries. Patients are given sedative medications to help them relax into a deep sleep. Dr. Azouz will then inject an axillary block which numbs the arm and helps with pain for up to 24 hours after the procedure. 

What is the recovery from a gaming injury surgery?

Dr. Azouz will place a splint after the procedure to help the affected area heal well. Recovery can vary depending on the procedure. Therapy may be recommended to help regain range of motion and strength. Most patients can return to the majority of full exercise activities in 4-6 weeks. 

What is the cost of a gaming injury surgery?

The cost of surgery ranges broadly. Dr. Azouz will obtain a medical history and perform a physical examination to help determine the cost. 

Call hand surgeon Dr. Azouz in Dallas today if you have a gaming injury leading to tendonitis, carpal tunnel, or trigger finger. 

We would love to help you at 972-702-8888.