Carpal Tunnel Syndrome is an extremely common condition, caused by a pinched nerve (the median nerve), and resulting in tingling, numbness, and weakness throughout the affected wrist and hand. The median nerve runs through the length of the arm, and passes through a portion of the wrist known as the carpal tunnel. When this nerve becomes pinched, the carpal tunnel becomes swollen and narrows, leading to decreased movement and sensation in four of the fingers (the pinky finger is often unaffected). In the majority of cases, carpal tunnel syndrome is brought on by repetitive motions of the wrist – such as typing, writing, or playing video games to excess. However, there are several other potential causes. Carpal tunnel syndrome may also be caused by preexisting conditions such as diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis, and hypothyroidism. Whatever the cause of your carpal tunnel, we at Comprehensive Pain of the Palm Beaches have the means to assist in your recovery.
Symptoms of Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
Though symptoms of carpal tunnel rarely vary from person-to-person, it is important to seek professional medical care so that the condition can be properly diagnosed. Symptoms of carpal tunnel syndrome include:
- Weakness of the hand and wrist
- Difficulty holding objects
- Numbness of the hand and fingers (excluding pinky finger)
- Zapping sensation, similar to an electric shock
Treatment for Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
When treating carpal tunnel syndrome, it is important that medical intervention begins as soon after symptoms develop as possible. If you begin to experience weakness or numbness of the hands and wrist, do what you can to decrease activities that worsen physical symptoms; take frequent breaks from strenuous activities, and apply cold compresses to help reduce potential swelling. If your symptoms are mild to moderate, splinting the wrist for an extended period of time may help significantly. If your symptoms are severe (and if you have been experiencing symptoms for over 10 months), more invasive treatment methods may be necessary. These treatment methods may include medications, endoscopic surgery, or open surgery.
How Comprehensive Pain of the Palm Beaches Heals Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
When treating carpal tunnel syndrome, we will first gage how persistent and severe symptoms are. If symptoms remain mild to moderate, we will utilize wrist splinting, decreased strenuous activity, and pharmaceutical intervention. Medications such as anti-inflammatory drugs (nonsteroidal) can prove useful. We may use corticosteroid injections in more extreme cases. If pain is severe, persistent, and long-term, we may begin to consider surgical intervention. Open surgery is rarely necessary, but may prove extremely beneficial in certain cases.
If you are suffering from carpal tunnel syndrome, we can help. Call (561) 434-7577 and let the caring staff at Comprehensive Pain of the Palm Beaches get you on the path to healing.