Everyone can develop carpal tunnel syndrome, but women are three times more likely than men to develop the classic pain and tingling in their hands and fingers. Emile Wakim, MD, and the providers at Pacifica Orthopedics encourage you to get early treatment for carpal tunnel syndrome to prevent the condition from worsening. To learn more about carpal tunnel or to schedule an appointment, call the office in Huntington Beach, California, or book an appointment online.
One of the nerves that serves your hand and fingers, the median nerve, travels through your wrist using a small channel called the carpal tunnel. Several tendons also make their way to your fingers by traveling through the same tunnel.
When anything reduces the space inside the carpal tunnel, pressure is placed on the nerve, causing a condition known as carpal tunnel syndrome.
A variety of problems can cause carpal tunnel, including:
Inflammation develops in the tendons when you repeatedly perform the same movement, such as keyboarding.
When you flex your wrist, the movement increases pressure on the median nerve. Prolonged flexion may lead to carpal tunnel syndrome.
Any injury can lead to inflamed tendons or directly damage the nerve.
Inflammatory conditions such as arthritis can narrow the carpal tunnel. Diabetes may also increase your risk of developing carpal tunnel syndrome.
Thyroid disorders and hormone fluctuations due to pregnancy and menopause may contribute to carpal tunnel.
You may not be aware of symptoms at first because carpal tunnel syndrome develops gradually. Eventually, you’ll experience:
Your thumb, index finger, and middle finger are most likely to be affected by carpal tunnel syndrome.
Depending on the severity of your carpal tunnel syndrome, Dr. Wakim and Dr. Ahearn may recommend one or more of the following:
If conservative therapies fail to relieve your symptoms, Dr. Ahearn or Dr. Wakim may suggest carpal tunnel release surgery to remove pressure on the nerve.
Dr. Wakim often uses an endoscopic procedure when performing carpal tunnel surgery. The endoscope is a thin tube with a camera that’s guided through a small incision.
The surgery is performed using tiny tools that may go through the same tube as the endoscope or be inserted through a second small incision.
As soon as you notice signs of carpal tunnel syndrome, call Pacifica Orthopedics or book an appointment online.