Writing with a pen that has a fat barrel can place as much as 50 times less stress on the bones and ligaments at the base of your hand, according to research at Duke University. Changing to a chunkier pen can cut in half the risk of carpal tunnel syndrome as a result.~Magazine Excerpt
When I was growing up I wrote by hand several novels, now I cant jot down more than a sentence without pain in my hand. Now i have some chunky pens (as in wider than your thumb) and now I can go without pain for at least a paragraph. If it can work for me it can work for you.