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Piano playing and arthritis?

I have a touch of osteoarthritis in my right hand: The thumb joint at the palm is swollen (knobby) and occasionally aches and/or gets stiff.  I'm in otherwise excellent shape for a 59-year-old man: I've exercised regularly for decades, eaten well, am often mistaken for 40s.

I've recently considered taking up the piano again after decades of not playing.  Would this hurt my hand, would it accelerate the progression of arthritis?  Or would it help?  

Many thanks.
1 Responses
1711789 tn?1361308007
MEDICAL PROFESSIONAL
Hi there!

Well, swelling of the ‘thumb joint’ does not necessarily mean osteoarthritis, especially if it is just a single joint involved. Other possible causes include cysts, infections, inflammations, soft tissue growths, bony or cartilage outgrowths, bunions etc. It would be best to get this evaluated by an orthopedician/ rheumatologist, for an accurate diagnosis and appropriate management. If indeed it turns out to be osteoarthritis, increased movements are best avoided around the joint, especially those that involve rapid repetitive motion (such as in piano playing), while graded smooth movements may help with the stiffness, if any. Still, it would be best to let your doctor answer the question after the evaluation.
Hope this was useful.

Take care!
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