In the fingers, there are tight bands called pulleys. Tendons glide underneath these. When there is inflammation, the tendons have a hard time fitting through that space, and can get stuck at the base of the finger. This causes pain, as well as clicking and locking. Sometimes you may even need to use other fingers to release it. This is called a trigger finger.
Treatment includes both non-surgical and surgical options. The injection of a low dose steroid into the area can reduce the inflammation, and allow the tendon to glide freely. When it progresses or injections are no longer helping, a surgical procedure is indicated.
This involves making a small incision at the base of the finger, under local anesthetic. The tight pulley is released, and the skin is closed with stitches. This allows the tendon to glide freely again.
A small bandage is applied, and you start moving your fingers gently immediately after surgery.