Flexor Digitorum Superficialis Referred Pain Pattern

Flexor Digitorum Superficialis Muscle: Trigger Point Pain

The flexor digitorum superficialis is a muscle in the front of the forearm. Trigger points in this muscle will cause sharp stabbing pain in one or any combination of the four fingers. The pain occasionally radiates up into the palm and the wrist. It is a prime suspect of all incidences of trigger finger.

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    Flexor Digitorum Superficialis Muscle

    Where Is The Flexor Digitorum Superficialis

    The flexor digitorum superficialis attaches the bone of the upper arm (humerus) runs down the inside of the forearm  and connects via four tendons to the four fingers (phalanges).

    What Movements Does It Control?

    • Bends the fingers down toward the palm
    • Helps bend the wrist down

    For detailed anatomy information: Flexor Digitorum Superficialis Anatomy Study

    Flexor Digitorum Superficialis Muscle Trigger Points Symptoms:

    • Sharp pain is felt on the inside (palm side) of one or all four fingers
    • Pain will sometimes extend up into the heel of the hand and wrist
    • Is a major contributor to “trigger finger”: finger locks in bent position
    • Uncontrollable twitching in the fingers

    TWD Recommends

    Jar grips should be in every kitchen to open jars and bottles to help prevent injury to the arm extensor muscles. So many painful arm, wrist, and hand injuries happen trying to open sealed lids on jars. Great for those with hand and wrist arthritis. Works on door knobs too!

    What Causes Trigger Points To Develop In The Flexor Digitorum Superficialis?

    • Instruments or tools that require a tight grip (pen, pencil, hammer screwdriver, etc)
    • Tennis
    • Golf
    • Skiing
    • Playing the piano, guitar
    • Gripping a steering wheel
    • Using scissors
    • Knitting and crocheting
    • Sewing
    • Raising your arm and bending it behind your head, e.g. brushing or braiding your hair

    TWD Recommends

    Whether the pain in your hands is caused by trigger points, a muscle injury or arthritis, compression has been shown to help with pain relief. The Imak Compression Arthritis Gloves are some of the best on the market.

    The gloves provide gentle compression, which helps decrease both pain relief and inflammation. The seams of the gloves are sewn to the outside so you will not have irritation or discomfort. The fingers opening is reinforced so that they will not fray with wear or during washing.

    To determine your size, measure straight across the widest part of your palm. Extra small: up to 2 3/4 inches wide. Small: up to 3 1/8 inches across. Medium: up to 3 1/2 inches across. Large: up to 4 inches across. Extra large: up to 4 1/2 inches across.

    Flexor Digitorum Superficialis Trigger Point Treatment

    One option is to find a massage therapist, physical therapist, or chiropractor with trigger point therapy training to show you how to find and treat the specific TrPs.

    If you would like to learn self-treatment, get The Trigger Point Therapy Workbook. The workbook will walk you through finding the muscle and the trigger point. The diagrams and instructions will teach you how to do the appropriate treatment. Best of all, you will have a resource to help you locate and treat TrPs throughout the body.

    If you are going to use the workbook, you will need a massage ball to do the treatment. The Kieba Massage Massage Balls can be used on muscles throughout the body.

    Trigger points respond best to several 1-2 minutes treatments spread throughout the day.

    Sombra Warm Therapy Gel is recommended for relaxing muscles and relieving pain. It warms without the burning heat of other gels. An excellent choice for pain caused by trigger points, muscle/joint over-use and stiffness, and arthritis. If you have reoccurring muscle pain you should keep Somba on hand, it provides almost instant relief. (Not sold in stores)

    Biofreeze Pain Relieving Gel is an excellent pain-relieving gel recommend for those who have sudden onset muscle pain or recent injuries.  It is better to use than warm therapy gels and creams for muscle pain caused by inflammation as it cools the area much like ice. If your pain is from a recent injury use Biofreeze. It is excellent to use on sprains, strained and sore muscles and joints.

    The CompressionZ Compression Arm Sleeves are for those who want or need more support for muscle injury, muscle recovery or lymphedema. The sleeves work well for those who have chronic elbow, forearm and wrist pain due to repetitive motions that can irritate the extensor muscles in the arm. The sleeves work well for athletes as well as people whose jobs require repetitive twisting motions of the wrist. The sleeves are available in 3 sizes and a variety of colors. Be sure to read the size chart and follow the instructions to ensure proper fit. Two sleeves per package

    Interesting facts:

    • Pain caused by the flexor digitorum superficialis is sharp. Arthritis and carpal tunnel pain tends to be less sharp and more of an ache.

    Flexor digitorum superficialis muscle pain and symptoms can be similar to, contribute to, and be affected by these medical diagnoses:

    • Trigger finger
    • Thoracic outlet syndrome
    • Cubital tunnel syndrome
    • Dupuytren’s Contracture
    • C8 or T1 Radiculopathy
    • Raynaud’s Disease
    • Gout


    Satellite trigger points associated with the flexor digitorum superficialis muscle:

    Trigger points one muscle will cause TrPs to develop in other muscles. These are known as satellite trigger points. You will need to check these muscles for additional TrPs.


    TWD Recommends

    Freeze Sleeve Cold Therapy Compression Sleeve is recommended by medical professionals for treatment of injury and over-use soreness. The sleeve provides total circumference cold therapy and compression that other cold treatments do not provide. The sleeve slides on and features material that can be worn on bare skin, allowing you to be mobile during treatment. It can be used for most areas of the arms and legs.