Carpal tunnel syndrome is a nerve disorder of the hand. It is caused by compression of the median nerve. The median nerve gets squeezed inside a narrow passage in the wrist called the carpal tunnel. This nerve provides feeling to the thumb, index and middle fingers, and half the ring finger.
Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
Copyright © Nucleus Medical Media, Inc.
Carpal tunnel syndrome is created by pressure on the median nerve. This pressure is caused by the carpal tunnel becoming narrower. The narrowing can be caused by many factors, including:
Women and older adults are at greater risk for carpal tunnel syndrome.
Factors that may increase your risk of carpal tunnel syndrome include:
Carpal tunnel syndrome causes symptoms in one or both hands or wrists. Symptoms may include:
You will be asked about your symptoms and medical history. A physical exam of your arms, wrists, and hands will be done. The exam will include tests of strength, sensation, and signs of nerve irritation or damage.
Other tests may include:
It is important to correct whatever is causing the carpal tunnel syndrome. Sometimes making simple changes in your workplace or home may help relieve symptoms.
Treatment may also include:
A splint will prevent extreme movements of the wrist. It is most effective when worn at night. It can help you avoid waking up with symptoms.
You may reduce your chances of getting carpal tunnel syndrome by:
American Association of Neurological Surgeons
Ortho Info—American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons
Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety
Canadian Physiotherapy Association
Carpal tunnel syndrome. EBSCO DynaMed Plus website. Available at: http://www.dynamed.com/topics/dmp~AN~T113671/Carpal-tunnel-syndrome. Updated July 25, 2016. Accessed September 29, 2016.
Carpal tunnel syndrome. The Female Patient. 1997;21-30.
Carpal tunnel syndrome: how you can help your patient overcome the symptoms. Consultant. 1994.
Cartwright MS, Hobson-Webb L, et al. Evidence-based guideline: neuromuscular ultrasound for the diagnosis of carpal tunnel syndrome. Muscle Nerve. 2012 Aug;46(2):287-93.
JR, Gaughan JP, Ilyas AM. The sensitivity and specificity of ultrasound for the diagnosis of carpal tunnel syndrome: a meta-analysis. Clin Orthop Relat Res. 2011 Apr;469(4):1089-94. ns; 2005: chap 36
Fowler JR, Gaughan JP, et al. The sensitivity and specificity of ultrasound for the diagnosis of carpal tunnel syndrome: a meta-analysis. Clin Orthop Relat Res. 2011 Apr;469(4):1089-94.
Hunderfund AN, Boon AJ, et al. Sonography in carpal tunnel syndrome. Muscle Nerve. 2011 Oct;44(4):485-491.
Katz RT. Carpal tunnel syndrome: a practical review. Am Fam Physician. 1994;49:1371-1379, 1385-1386.
Ly-Pen D, Andréu JL, et al. Comparison of surgical decompression and local steroid injection in the treatment of carpal tunnel syndrome: 2-year clinical results from a randomized trial. Rheumatology (Oxford). 2012 Aug;51(8):1447-54.
NINDS carpal tunnel syndrome information page. National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke website. Available at:
...(Click grey area to select URL)
Updated September 5, 2014. Accessed September 9, 2014.
O'Connor D, Page MJ, et al. Ergonomic positioning or equipment for treating carpal tunnel syndrome. Cochrane Database Syst Rev. 2012 Jan 18;1.
Page MJ, O'Connor D, et al. Exercise and mobilisation interventions for carpal tunnel syndrome. Cochrane Database Syst Rev. 2012 Jun 13;6.
Rayan GM. Understanding and managing carpal tunnel syndrome. Journal of Musculoskeletal Medicine. 1999;654.
Shores JT, Lee WP. An evidence-based approach to carpal tunnel syndrome. Plast Reconstr Surg. 2010 Dec;126(6):2196-2204.
Steyers CM, Schelkun PH. Practical management of carpal tunnel syndrome. Phys Sportsmed. 1995:83.
Whitley JM, McDonnell DE. Carpal tunnel syndrome. Postgraduate Medicine. 1995;97:89-92,95-96.
Last reviewed September 2016 by Teresa Briedwell, PT, DPT, OCS, CSCS
Last Updated: 9/9/2014
Copyright © 2017 EBSCO Publishing All rights reserved.
Sponsored by iHerb.Com
Positively the best overall value for natural products!