Valley Orthopedic Institute
Board Certified Orthopedic Surgeons & Hand Surgeons located in Palmdale, CA & Ridgecrest, CA
Carpal tunnel syndrome begins as a mild pain or tingling in your hand and fingers, but if you ignore the signs and don't get treatment, you can end up with permanent nerve damage. Anand Shah, MD, Mehul Taylor, MD, and the team at Valley Orthopedic Institute have years of experience treating carpal tunnel syndrome. They develop a customized treatment plan that eases your symptoms and protects the nerve. To schedule an appointment, call the office in Palmdale or Ridgecrest, California, or use the online booking feature today.
Carpal Tunnel Q & A
What is carpal tunnel syndrome?
Carpal tunnel syndrome occurs when you have a pinched median nerve. The median nerve goes down your arm and into your hands. On the way, it passes through a narrow opening in your wrist called the carpal tunnel.
Several tendons also go through the carpal tunnel. Any condition that affects the soft tissues in the tunnel can compress the nerve and cause carpal tunnel syndrome.
What causes carpal tunnel syndrome?
Several problems can lead to carpal tunnel syndrome, including:
Repetitive use injuries
When you repeat the same hand and finger movements, the tendons get irritated and inflamed. The inflamed tissues then pinch the nerve.
Wrist flexion and extension
If you perform manual activities with your wrist bent down (flexion) or up (extension), you put extra pressure on the median nerve.
Sustaining an injury that damages the bones or soft tissues in your wrist can result in carpal tunnel syndrome.
If you have a smaller-than-normal carpal tunnel, diabetes, or an inflammatory condition like rheumatoid arthritis, you have a higher chance of developing carpal tunnel syndrome.
What symptoms occur due to carpal tunnel syndrome?
The symptoms tend to develop slowly. As the condition progresses, you experience problems such as:
- Hand and wrist pain
- Hand, thumb, and finger weakness
- Numbness in your hands or fingers
- Electric-shock sensations in your wrist and hand
- Tingling in your thumb or first three fingers
- Feeling like you have swollen fingers (when you don't)
As soon as you recognize the symptoms, you should seek an evaluation. Without prompt treatment, the median nerve becomes permanently damaged.
How is carpal tunnel syndrome treated?
When you seek help for carpal tunnel syndrome at an early stage, your provider at Valley Orthopedic Institute uses conservative treatments to ease your symptoms and help the nerve heal. Your treatment plan may include:
- Immobilizing your wrist
- Changing or limiting hand activities
- Improving hand and wrist ergonomics
- Taking nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs)
- Practicing nerve gliding exercises
- Getting a steroid injection
- Getting a platelet-rich plasma injection
If these treatments don't improve your symptoms, or you already have a severely damaged nerve, your provider at Valley Orthopedic Institute may recommend outpatient surgery. During the procedure, carpal tunnel release, your provider relieves pressure on the nerve by cutting the ligament covering one part of the carpal tunnel.
When symptoms arise, don't wait to seek help for carpal tunnel syndrome. Call Valley Orthopedic Institute or book an appointment online today.
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