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Incidence and Treatment Efficacy of Trigger Finger in the Breast Cancer Population on Aromatase Inhibitors. Hand (N Y) 2023 Mar;18(2):250-253



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Pubmed Central ID




Scopus ID

2-s2.0-85107287483 (requires institutional sign-in at Scopus site)   1 Citation


BACKGROUND: Trigger finger is a common hand complaint of the general population. Limited literature exists implicating a low-estrogen state in patients on aromatase inhibitor (AI) therapy for breast cancer who develop trigger finger. The authors' objective was to determine the incidence and treatment outcomes of this population.

METHODS: A single-center retrospective chart review was conducted on patients with a diagnosis of breast cancer on AI who developed trigger finger from 2010 to 2019. The total population of patients during this time served as our population, and patients with breast cancer not on AI with trigger finger served as our control. Primary outcomes included total number of injections and need for surgery. Secondary outcomes included risk factors for surgery. χ2 analysis and logistical regression model determined the significance of primary and secondary outcomes, respectively.

RESULTS: In all, 192 patients of a population size of 664 751 met our study group criteria. The study group showed a higher incidence of trigger finger (5.1% vs 1.3%; P < .001) compared with our population. Patients treated with AI for breast cancer had both higher incidence of trigger finger (5.1% vs 1.5%, P < .001) and injections (77.1% vs 66.5%, P < .001) compared with patients not on AI therapy. Independent risk factors requiring surgical treatment were found in patients with diabetes (odds ratio [OR], 3.54; P = .01) and in patients with concomitant radiation therapy (OR, 3.17; P = .02).

CONCLUSIONS: This study demonstrates for the first time the incidence, treatment outcomes, and surgical risk factors of trigger finger in patients on AI therapy for breast cancer.

Author List

Regent-Smith AJ, Childers EJ, Dzwierzynski WW, Morgan AL


William W. Dzwierzynski MD Professor in the Plastic Surgery department at Medical College of Wisconsin

MESH terms used to index this publication - Major topics in bold

Aromatase Inhibitors
Breast Neoplasms
Retrospective Studies
Treatment Outcome
Trigger Finger Disorder