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Clinical Outcome of Nonoperative Treatment of de Quervain's Disease with Local Corticosteroid Injection in Nigerian Setting.

BACKGROUND: The goal of treatment of de Quervain's disease, pain relief and restoration of hand functions, is achievable with local corticosteroid injection. However, published reports indicate variations in its cure rate and efficacy from and within subregions. This study aimed to determine the outcome of this treatment modality in Nigerian setting.

PATIENTS AND METHODS: Fifty-one cases of de Quervain's disease in 41 consecutive eligible patients were enrolled between January 2011 and December 2016, treated with local methylprednisolone acetate injection and followed up prospectively in orthopedic clinics of Federal Teaching Hospital, Abakaliki, and Mater Miserere Cordiae Hospital, Afikpo, Nigeria.

RESULTS: Eight weeks post initial injection, 94% of the cases were signs and symptoms free. The recurrence rate post initial injection (19.6%) correlated directly with pain intensity ( P < 0.001) and was significantly ( P = 0.018) higher in subacute compared to acute and chronic presentations. At the end of a follow-up period that ranged from 24 to 84 months with a mean of 54 months, 47 (92.2%) cases were cured with either single injection (78.4%) or multiple injections (13.7%) of corticosteroid, 3 (5.9%) had incomplete resolution but were satisfied, and in 1 (2%) there was no beneficial response. There was no serious adverse reaction; 14 (27.5%) cases had localized skin depigmentation.

CONCLUSION: In our setting, local corticosteroid injection as a treatment modality for de Quervain's tenosynovitis has short- and long-term success rates of over 90%, and is rarely associated with serious adverse reaction. It is recommended as the initial treatment of choice in de Quervain's disease.

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