Carpal Tunnel Treatment in Houston, TX

A common condition caused by the compression of the median nerve in the hand and wrist, carpal tunnel syndrome is a treatable ailment with a range of symptoms. Often starting as a tingling, burning, or numbness in the hand (generally at night), this syndrome can eventually grow in severity, decreasing a person's grip strength and affecting their ability to form a fist, grasp objects, and perform certain tasks. Sometimes, shooting pain from the wrist through the arm can be a symptom as well. Though this ailment can sometimes subside on its own, treatment is often needed to correct the condition. In some chronic cases, atrophy (wasting) of the hand muscles and permanent nerve damage can occur if the condition goes untreated in Houston. Carpal tunnel syndrome can affect one or both hands and is more common in women than men.

Carpal Tunnel Syndrome Causes

It is commonly, yet incorrectly, believed that the syndrome is caused by long hours at the computer keyboard, but actually, there are several factors that can cause this condition. The symptoms occur when the median nerve becomes compressed within the "carpal tunnel", a passageway of ligament and bone surrounding the nerve at the base of the wrist. Contrary to most common beliefs, this compression is NOT caused by long hours of repetitive movement, such as at a computer keyboard, but this can aggravate the symptoms. It can also be caused by other factors such as injury, health conditions, or water retention.

Carpal Tunnel Syndrome Treatment

Non-Surgical Treatments:

Mild to moderate cases can often be treated non-surgically. The mainstay of non-surgical carpal tunnel syndrome treatment is night splints. These splints (often resembling bowler's braces) are worn at night and will often keep the symptoms at bay. Other options include changing work habits or working positions. Taking more breaks or exercising the hands and wrists during work can relieve or prevent symptoms. In moderate cases where pain and numbness persist, oral or injectable steroids can help relieve the symptoms and are often predictive of how a patient will respond to surgery. It is important to note, however, that the non-surgical treatments are not curative.

Surgical Treatments:

Historically, the incisions for carpal tunnel surgery were so large and painful that hand surgery was only reserved for recalcitrant cases. As the trend in all surgical specialties evolves towards smaller incisions and "minimally invasive" surgery provided by professionals in Houston, carpal tunnel surgery followed suit. The two most common approaches are the 'mini' open and the endoscopic approach. Regardless of which technique is chosen, the principle is the same: incise the transverse carpal ligament so that the median nerve will no longer be compressed.

If you believe you need care for carpal tunnel, Houston patients can turn to Fiore Hand & Wrist We're here to help guide you through the process and return your hands and wrists to working like new again.

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