Constant aching in your wrist and hand with progressive weakness in your arm are typical signs of carpal tunnel syndrome. If you’re experiencing symptoms like these, Rogozinski Orthopedic Clinic in Jacksonville, Florida, can help. The highly-skilled orthopedic surgeons offer both non-surgical solutions and carpal tunnel release surgery to relieve the nerve compression that’s causing your pain. Find out how you can get relief from hand and wrist pain by calling Rogozinski Orthopedic Clinic today or scheduling an appointment online.
What is carpal tunnel syndrome?
Carpal tunnel syndrome produces pain and weakness in your wrist and hand due to compression of the median nerve.
The median nerve travels from your shoulder, through your arm, and into your hand, passing through the carpal tunnel in your wrist. The carpal tunnel consists of a series of small bones connected by the transverse carpal ligament.
Carpal tunnel syndrome develops when the median nerve comes under pressure from the structures in your carpal tunnel, typically when the ligament swells or thickens.
Why might I get carpal tunnel syndrome?
There are various reasons why you might get carpal tunnel syndrome, including:
- Overuse or repetitive strain
- Injuries like sprains and fractures
- Hypothyroidism (underactive thyroid)
- Rheumatoid arthritis
These can all cause inflammation that narrows the carpal tunnel and compresses the median nerve.
What symptoms does carpal tunnel syndrome cause?
Initial symptoms of carpal tunnel syndrome are often tingling sensations and aching in your hand, followed by pain and weakness. These symptoms primarily affect the thumb side of your hand and are usually worse at night.
You might wake in the morning with a numb hand that’s very painful when you get the feeling back. As the condition progresses, you might find the pain and aching extends into your arm and up to your shoulder, following the path of the median nerve. Your hand gradually gets weaker, and you begin to drop things because you can’t grip very well.
Without treatment at Rogozinski Orthopedic Clinic, these symptoms are likely to worsen.
What treatment might I need for carpal tunnel syndrome?
Many patients with carpal tunnel syndrome benefit from wearing a wrist splint, which is especially effective at night because wrists tend to bend over as you sleep. Anti-inflammatory medication can also help reduce swelling in the carpal tunnel, and physical therapy keeps the wrist flexible.
If your hand and wrist pain persists, your provider can give you a steroid injection. The cortisone in these injections is a powerful anti-inflammatory that offers a long-term reduction in inflammation and pain.
A few patients find these measures aren’t enough to resolve their symptoms, in which case they may need carpal tunnel release surgery.
What does carpal tunnel release surgery involve?
Carpal tunnel release is an outpatient procedure that your orthopedic surgeon carries out under a local anesthetic.
They make an incision in the base of your hand that exposes the transverse carpal ligament, then cut through it to free up room for your median nerve. It’s also possible to do this surgery endoscopically, making small incisions and using a tiny camera.
Cutting the ligament shouldn’t result in any loss of function but could offer significant benefits in pain reduction and improved hand function.
To find out whether you need surgery for carpal tunnel syndrome, call Rogozinski Orthopedic Clinic and arrange a consultation or book an appointment online today.