Carpal tunnel syndrome is an aptly named disorder because it involves an actual tunnel that runs from the forearm to the wrist that contains the median nerve and several tendons. The median nerve is responsible for the movement and feeling of the first four fingers (all but the last, or little, finger). When the tunnel is compromised by swelling or irritation, it puts pressure on the median nerve, which causes numbness, tingling, pain, and weakness in the hand.
The pressure on the median nerve by the carpal tunnel can be caused by several things, including:
Athletes such as cyclists, pitchers, or gymnasts, who rely on their hands and wrists, are especially susceptible to carpal tunnel syndrome.
The main symptoms of carpal tunnel syndrome are:
If you catch carpal tunnel syndrome early enough in its progression, there is a lot you can do at home to address the issue, such as:
If the syndrome persists, cortisone injections or surgery may be required if other measures have had little effect. Dr. Burns goes over the options with you to help get you back to your daily routines as quickly as possible.
As well, Dr. Burns can recommend measures that have had great success in preventing the condition from returning, such as: