Hand and wrist patient information
Find out what to expect when you come to the hand and wrist clinic for your appointment.
Before your appointment
Please remember to check your appointment letter for anything specific you have been asked to take with you. In addition, it would be helpful if you could bring the following:
- Your full address and telephone number(s)
- Your appointment card and appointment letter
- Your GP’s name and address
- Money to pay for any prescriptions, or an exemption card
- A list of questions you may want to ask your consultant
During your appointment
You will be seen in one of our four hand clinics at Charing Cross Hospital. At your first appointment you will be seen and assessed by one of our surgeons. This will involve taking a detailed history of your problem and examining your hand or wrist. If you think your hand condition might be treated with a steroid injection (carpal tunnel syndrome, trigger finger, or arthritis of the hand) please be aware you cannot drive after these injections. Therefore, you should walk, take public transport, or arrange for someone else to drive you to and from the hospital.
You may have some simple investigations on the day such as an x-ray. If possible, a diagnosis will be made and a treatment plan decided. This could involve being seen by our hand therapy team for treatment or may involve surgery. Certain hand conditions such as carpal tunnel syndrome, trigger finger or osteoarthritis of hand joints may be treated by a local injection of steroid, and you may be offered this on your first visit to the clinic.
After your appointment
Often at the end of the first consultation, further investigations are required to work out what is wrong with your hand and wrist. These can be special scans (MRI, CT scan, ultrasound) or nerve conduction studies.
You may have to wait a few weeks for these specialist investigations. In this case we will organise a further consultation once the tests have been performed. If you do require surgery, all hand and wrist surgery is performed at Charing Cross Hospital and you will be treated as either a day case or an inpatient.
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