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Youssra Marjoua, M.D. | Hand and Wrist Specialist & Surgeon in Baltimore, Maryland

Youssra Marjoua, M.D. is a board-certified orthopedic hand surgeon in Maryland who specializes in conditions of the hand, wrist and elbow.

After obtaining her medical degree from Yale University School of Medicine, her orthopedic residency at the Harvard Orthopedic Residency Program, and her public policy degree at the Harvard Kennedy School of Government, Dr. Marjoua then completed an upper extremity and microsurgery fellowship at the prestigious Curtis National Hand Center

When should a patient see a doctor for wrist pain?

Patients should see a doctor as soon as possible if they had an injury that results in wrist pain. A fall on an outstretched hand could result in a wrist fracture or a scaphoid fracture, which would benefit from immediate evaluation to allow for proper diagnosis and treatment.  This would potentially reduce either the likelihood of a functionally limiting injury or the potential need for surgery.

What are some of the leading causes of wrist pain?

The leading causes of wrist pain differ by age groups.  In the elderly population, it is most likely associated with arthritis that may or may not have resulted from prior trauma.  In a younger population, it is often a result of acute or chronic trauma. In the subpopulation of patients with rheumatoid arthritis—it is the result of joint degeneration due to an underlying inflammatory process.  This is different from osteoarthritis, which is often a result of age, overuse, or trauma. 

The wrist effectively has three different joints—the radiocarpal joint (center of the wrist), the ulnar carpal joint (pinky side of the wrist), and the distal radioulnar joint (between center and pinky side).  Trauma to any one of those joints can cause wrist pain, but it is also possible for different injuries to exists at some or all of those joints, simultaneously. This can cause pain, weakness, and wrist stiffness either due to instability or injury-induced arthritis.

What are some examples of wrist-specific conditions treated by hand and wrist specialist?

Common wrist-specific conditions include bony injuries such as distal radius (wrist) fractures, scaphoid fractures, and distal ulna fractures. They also include ligament injuries such as scapholunate ligament tears and Triangular Fiborcartilage Complex (TFCC) tears and tendonitis including dequervain’s tendonitis (along the thumb side of the wrist) as well as extensor Capri Ulnaris (ECU) tendonitis (along the pinky side of the wrist).

Other wrist-specific conditions and causes of wrist pain can include:

  • Kienbock’s disease of the lunate (avascular necrosis of the lunate bone)
  • Distal Radioulner Joint (DRUJ) Instability
  • Unaddressed ligament injuries that subsequently cause osteoarthritis in or near the wrist.
  • Ulnar impaction syndrome due to the ulna being longer than the radius

Why are the hand and wrist sub-specialties of orthopedics?

Orthopedic surgeons (and plastic surgeons) who are also hand and wrist specialists have received additional extensive training on the anatomy, pathology, surgical technique and treatment of the hand, wrist, forearm, and elbow. That additional specialized training results in a greater level of expertise in the recognition, diagnosis and treatment of problems in the upper extremity—particularly when compared to surgeons who have not undergone specific training in treating or operating on the hand and upper extremity.

For patients who are experiencing issues with wrist pain, what is the importance of seeing a dedicated hand specialist?

Consulting with a hand specialist when experiencing wrist pain is very important—particularly due to the often missed subtle injuries of the bones and soft tissues of the wrist, which could result in long-term pain, arthritis, stiffness, and functional limitations. Conditions in this category are much harder to treat if it is not diagnosed and treated in a timely manner.

Additionally, if there are subtle ligament injuries or fractures in the wrist that are not necessarily associated with recent conspicuous trauma, non-hand specialists may accidentally overlook the injury, making the issue much more difficult to treat in the future.

What should patients expect in an initial consult with Dr. Marjoua for wrist pain?

Patients consulting with Dr. Marjoua for wrist pain should expect a candid and compassionate experience with a hand specialist who takes great pride in the thorough and personable care of her patients.

A comprehensive medical history will be obtained, and a physical exam will be performed in order to fully understand the extent of the wrist pain and identify any abnormal findings that are elicited with detailed provocative maneuvers.

Dr. Marjoua will provide a clear and detailed explanation of what the diagnosis is and she will provide several treatment options to include the risks and benefits of both operative and non-operative interventions.

When applicable,  Dr. Marjoua will illustrate on paper a pictorial of your wrist issue to help you better understand the cause of the pain, as well as how certain treatment options can address the underlying cause. She will then provide a clear management of expectations of treatment—including hand therapy, potential post-operative recovery if surgery is indicated, rehabilitation, and general care.

Why choose Dr. Marjoua as your hand and wrist specialist in Baltimore, Maryland?

Dr. Marjoua is a fellowship-trained hand specialist, who acquired additional training internationally to learn novel techniques that are becoming more available in the U.S.  Her goal is to create a uniquely tailored treatment plan that meets the unique needs of each of her patients.  This means that she believes that the best course of action may not always be a surgical course.

She is an expert of the hand, wrist, and elbow due to her devoted education and training, along with her experience treating these conditions.

The primary goals of seeing a dedicated hand specialist are to get an accurate diagnosis, to understand the cause of the condition, and to learn both the surgical and non-surgical treatment options. A qualified hand surgeon will also equip you with the resources for managing your injury, your recovery, and return to function. Dr. Marjoua is committed to ensuring your comprehensive visit will result in an accurate diagnosis and a clear plan of care.