What is Hand Therapy?

We specialize in upper extremity injuries, or what is called Hand Therapy. Hand Therapy is a type of rehabilitation performed by an occupational or physical therapist with patients that suffer from conditions affecting the hands and upper extremities. This type of therapy enables patients to hasten their return to a productive lifestyle.

Patients who are good candidates for hand therapy may have been affected by an accident or trauma, leaving them with wounds, scars, burns, injured tendons or nerves, fractures, or even amputations of the fingers, hands or arms. Others include patients who suffer from conditions such as carpal tunnel syndrome and tennis elbow, as well as chronic problems such as arthritis or a neurologic condition (i.e. stroke).

Why should I see a hand specialist?

The hand is very complicated and jam-packed with delicate nerves, muscles, and tendons. A small injury can translate into a huge loss of function, and when you consider the thousands of movements our hands make every day, it makes sense that one should invest in the therapist with the most knowledge and experience. Rue and Primavera proudly offers one of the finest teams of hand therapists in Washington State, combining decades of experience with a deep passion for helping people get back their functionality.

Broken arms
Carpal tunnel syndrome
Cubital tunnel syndrome
Tennis elbow -lateral epicondylitis
Golfers elbow – medial epicondylitis
Elbow fractures
De Quervain’s syndrome
Dupuytren’s contracture
Ganglion cysts
Hand fractures
Mallet fingers
Jersey fingers
Rheumatoid arthritis
Thumb arthritis, trigger finger/thumb
Wrist and finger fractures
Shoulder arthritis/tendinitis
Shoulder fractures

Common conditions our occupational therapists treat:

Techniques we use to treat some of these conditions:

-Joint, Soft Tissue, and Neural Mobilization – 
We utilize different types of mobilization that help decrease stiffness and increase ROM, especially in patients who have had surgery or a fracture. These techniques also help to improve neural function and alleviate pain

-Pain Management – 
By using modalities, massages, and soft tissue technique, we are able to help control pain associated with many persistent injuries that our patients encounter.

-Edema Control – 
We aim to decrease swelling through manual edema mobilization with hands-on techniques or with modalities.

-Dynamic and Static Splinting – 
We are adept at both Dynamic and Static splinting. These custom made splints, protect fractures, help soft tissue injuries, and improve range of motion and function by positioning the hand to provide a prolonged low load stretch or in a functional position safe position.

-Sensory Re-Education and Desensitization – 
After injuries to small nerves in the hand, we will monitor sensation recovery or will use different textures to decrease hypersensitivity.

-Joint Protection Techniques – 
We will educate patients on how to use their upper extremities in daily living to prevent stress to their joints and to help alleviate future injuries that are a result of persistent misuse.

-Physical Agent Modalities – 
We use hot packs, cold packs, paraffin wax baths, electrical stimulation (E-Stim), ultrasound, game ready pneumatic compression cryotherapy and other modalities to decrease pain and prepare tissue for manual techniques. Our range of modalities offers advantages that you are unlikely to find at other therapy clinics.

-Work Simulation – 
In order to allow our patients to return to work in as quick a time as possible, we will review the patient’s job descriptions and develop a treatment plan that targets their injuries efficiently and effectively. It is in our best interest to see our patients healthy and functioning at their optimum level.

questions? contact us

-Treatments without an operation

-Help with recent or long-lasting pain

-Help to reduce sensitivity from nerve problems

-Learning to feel again after a nerve injury

-Learning home exercise programs to help with movement and strength

-How to make splints to help prevent or improve stiffness

-Learning to complete everyday activities with special tools

-Help getting back to work

If surgery is needed, our hand therapists can also help with a patient’s recovery. This may include assistance with helping wounds heal, preventing infection, scar management and reducing swelling.

How can hand therapy benefit you?

If you need hand therapy you already know it. If one can’t use his hands life is just not the same. Pain even in just one finger can be debilitating.

You want it fixed and you want it now.

what our patients are saying!

“I fell off a ladder and broke my collarbone and six ribs. Wendy’s treatments had me pain-free in only three months after the accident. Also, I am regaining my range of motion, with almost no difference from before the accident. I unequivocally recommend Rue and Primavera for all your physical therapy needs.”

george s.

“I came in following a fractured elbow and wrist. I had developed CRPS in my right hand and was unable to turn my hand palm up. I wasn’t sure I would ever regain use of my right arm. I can now turn my arm properly and regained most of the movement in my right hand. I never would have come this far without my providers excellent care. The entire staff has become friends and I will miss coming!” 

Deborah S.

"Fantastic experience! Wendy is so professional yet very personable. She truly listens to your concerns and addresses your needs. When I came to Wendy, after my car accident, I was just out of my wheelchair and began using a walker, progressed to a cane and then began walking independently. She gave me exercises to do at home as well. I have regained my strength and once again feel comfortable walking." 

Deb C.

"My experience at Rue and Primavera with my therapist was excellent. Before my hand surgery, I could not pick up anything and the pain from the carpal tunnel was terrible. Thanks to the OT's, I can do all my normal activities and my favorite crafts. They started out with small movements and massaging to lifting weights and great dexterity with all of my fingers. All were very patient and great to work with."

Terry G.




patient forms


where pain ends, and progress begins.