Effectiveness of Corticosteroid Injections in Diabetic Patients With De Quervain Tenosynovitis


      We sought to determine the effectiveness of corticosteroid injections (CSIs) for de Quervain tenosynovitis in patients with diabetes mellitus.


      We retrospectively identified all patients with diabetes receiving a CSI for de Quervain tenosynovitis by 16 surgeons over a 2-year period. Data collected included demographic information, medical comorbidities, number and timing of CSIs, and first dorsal compartment release. Success was defined as not undergoing an additional CSI or surgical intervention. The mixture of a corticosteroid and local anesthetic provided in each injection was at the discretion of each individual surgeon.


      Corticosteroid injections were given to 169 wrists in 169 patients with diabetes. Out of 169 patients, 83 (49%) had success following the initial CSI, 44 (66%) following a second CSI, and 6 (67%) following a third CSI. A statistically significant difference was identified in the success rates between the first and second CSIs. Ultimately, 36 of 169 wrists (21%) underwent a first dorsal compartment release.


      Patients with diabetes mellitus have a decreased probability of success following a single CSI for de Quervain tenosynovitis in comparison to nondiabetic patients, as described in the literature. However, the effectiveness of each additional CSI does not appear to diminish.

      Type of study/level of evidence

      Therapeutic IV.

      Key words

      To read this article in full you will need to make a payment

      Purchase one-time access:

      Academic & Personal: 24 hour online accessCorporate R&D Professionals: 24 hour online access
      One-time access price info
      • For academic or personal research use, select 'Academic and Personal'
      • For corporate R&D use, select 'Corporate R&D Professionals'


      Subscribe to Journal of Hand Surgery
      Already a print subscriber? Claim online access
      Already an online subscriber? Sign in
      Institutional Access: Sign in to ScienceDirect


        • Earp B.E.
        • Han C.H.
        • Floyd W.E.
        • Rozental T.D.
        • Blazar P.E.
        De Quervain tendinopathy: survivorship and prognostic indicators of recurrence following a single corticosteroid injection.
        J Hand Surg Am. 2015; 40: 1161-1165
        • Blood T.D.
        • Morrell N.T.
        • Weiss A.C.
        Tenosynovitis of the hand and wrist: a critical analysis review.
        JBJS Rev. 2016; 4: e7
        • Catalano L.W.
        • Glickel S.Z.
        • Barron O.A.
        • Harrison R.
        • Marshall A.
        • Purcelli-Lafer M.
        Effect of local corticosteroid injection of the hand and wrist on blood glucose in patients with diabetes mellitus.
        Orthopedics. 2012; 35: e1754-e1758
        • Ilyas A.M.
        Nonsurgical treatment for de Quervain’s tenosynovitis.
        J Hand Surg Am. 2009; 34: 928-929
        • Hassan K.
        • Sohn A.
        • Shi L.
        • Lee M.
        • Wolf J.M.
        De Quervain tenosynovitis: an evaluation of the epidemiology and utility of multiple injections using a national database.
        J Hand Surg Am. 2022; 47: 284.e1-284.e6
        • Dardas A.Z.
        • VandenBerg J.
        • Shen T.
        • Gelberman R.H.
        • Calfee R.P.
        Long-term effectiveness of repeat corticosteroid injections for trigger finger.
        J Hand Surg Am. 2017; 42: 227-235
        • de Carvalho e Silva F.
        • Jakimiu F.O.
        • Skare T.L.
        Diabetic hands: a study on strength and function.
        Diabetes Metab Syndr. 2014; 8: 162-165
        • Pensak M.J.
        • Bayron J.
        • Wolf J.M.
        Current treatment of de Quervain tendinopathy.
        J Hand Surg Am. 2013; 38 (quiz 2250): 2247-2249
        • Weiss A.P.C.
        • Akelman E.
        • Tabatabai M.
        Treatment of de Quervain’s disease.
        J Hand Surg Am. 1994; 19: 595-598
        • Harvey F.J.
        • Harvey P.M.
        • Horsley M.W.
        De Quervain’s disease: surgical or nonsurgical treatment.
        J Hand Surg Am. 1990; 15: 83-87
        • Lane L.B.
        • Boretz R.S.
        • Stuchin S.A.
        Treatment of de Quervain’s disease: role of conservative management.
        J Hand Surg Br. 2001; 26: 258-260
        • Baumgarten K.M.
        • Gerlach D.
        • Boyer M.I.
        Corticosteroid injection in diabetic patients with trigger finger. A prospective, randomized, controlled double-blinded study.
        J Bone Joint Surg Am. 2007; 89: 2604-2611
        • Stahl S.
        • Kanter Y.
        • Karnielli E.
        Outcome of trigger finger treatment in diabetes.
        J Diabetes Complications. 1997; 11: 287-290
        • Oh J.K.
        • Messing S.
        • Hyrien O.
        • Hammert W.C.
        Effectiveness of corticosteroid injections for treatment of de Quervain’s tenosynovitis.
        Hand (N Y). 2017; 12: 357-361

      Linked Article