What Causes Carpal Tunnel?
One of the most common complaints brought to orthopedic surgeons from patients is chronic discomfort within the wrists. Carpal tunnel syndrome is caused by the compression of the median nerve in the forearm. Complications can include a feeling of tingling, numbness, and pain in the hand and arm. There are several causes of Carpal Tunnel Syndrome, most commonly being prolonged use of typing or flexing of the wrists during work. If you are looking for a Wantagh orthopedist, visit us at Advanced Orthopedics & Joint Preservation.
Causes of Carpal Tunnel
- Heredity – Unfortunately, carpal tunnel is just one of several complications that can be passed down through generations. In a small number of people, there is decreased space for the median nerve to run through the carpal tunnel due to bone anatomy. This can cause compression of the nerve that worsens over time. If it interrupts your day-to-day routine, it may be treated by increasing the space through the canal surgically.
- Repetitive hand use – Frequent hand & wrist movements for a progressive period of time can lead to the development of swelling and inflammation. This may eventually increase pressure on the median nerve, catalyzing carpal tunnel syndrome.
- Pregnancy – Normal hormonal changes during pregnancy can create increased swelling in the affected area. This can lead to either permanent or temporary carpal tunnel syndrome.
- Health conditions – These include inflammatory conditions such as diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis, gout, hypothyroid disease, and osteoarthritis. Consulting with a Wantagh orthopedist to rule out underlying causes such as disease can be helpful in the long-term management of the condition.
The management of carpal tunnel syndrome can be either conservative or surgical based on severity and longevity. An orthopedic surgeon has the expertise to perform carpal tunnel release surgery, helping to make a substantial improvement in your symptoms.
Management of Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
- Bracing or splinting
- NSAIDs (anti-inflammatory medications)
- Nerve gliding exercises
- Steroid Injections
Carpal tunnel release surgery – Typically performed by an orthopedic surgeon. Involves cutting the transverse carpal ligament to release the nerve from entrapment. This procedure requires an expert orthopedist who has experience working with the nerves of the hand.
Consulting with an orthopedist is very helpful in the long-term management of carpal tunnel syndrome. The orthopedic surgeon can also order the necessary blood tests, x rays, ultrasound imaging, and other diagnostic tests needed to ascertain the cause of the carpal tunnel. If you are looking for a Wantagh orthopedist, contact us at Advanced Orthopedics & Joint Preservation. We offer the most sophisticated technology and a well-equipped staff to meet your needs so contact us today!