How we assess, treat & prevent Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
Being the most common nerve compression in the upper limb, we assess, treat & help prevent Carpal Tunnel Syndrome in our clinic almost everyday!
Carpal Tunnel Syndrome is a condition where one of the nerves (Median Nerve), is pressed (compressed) or swollen (inflamed) as it passes through the narrow tunnel at the wrist (the Carpal Tunnel).
Symptoms usually include waking up in the night with pins and needles in the tips of the thumb, index and middle fingers. People may report dropping objects or problems with fine motor tasks (like needle work). Or feel sore around the base of the thumb and forearm.
Symptoms may occur due to; - swollen tendons (flexor tendonditis) or swelling of or around the tendon sheath at the level of the wrist (synovitis) - narrowing of the tunnel due to wrist positioning, or due to osteoarthritis - exposure to vibration - external pressure on the wrists, or jewelry pressing into the wrists - fluid retention due to hormone changes, as seen during pregnancy
Hand Therapy can help by providing assessment to help determine whether your pins and needles, or symptoms actually are due to Carpal Tunnel Syndrome. We provide advice about how you might be able to alter they way you do things to help. And custom make a night splint to hold the tunnel is the most open position whilst you sleep. We will teach you some specific finger movements and nerve movement techniques which may help alleviate symptoms.
We work closely with local GP's and plastic and orthopaedic surgeons in SA. If hand therapy is not going to help, based on your history or clinical presentation- we will discuss with you other management options.