Carpal Tunnel Test and Surgery: When and Why Needed

Carpal Tunnel Syndrome

Carpal tunnel surgery is a procedure to correct a pinched nerve in the wrist called the median nerve. Pain, numbness and tingling in the hand and wrist can signal this condition called carpal tunnel syndrome. It occurs from pressure on the median nerve and tendons.

Why Surgery or Carpel Tunnel Tests

The symptoms of carpal tunnel result from swelling and pressure in the carpal tunnel space where the nerve and nine tendons lie. Either treatment or surgery can be performed to correct these issues. Addressing the pressure is important so that permanent nerve damage does not affect movements in your hand or wrist.

Dr. Jason Ashford is board certified in hand surgery and skilled at performing carpal tunnel surgery in Houston and Conroe Texas. With state of the art tunnel testing and treatment options, you will receive excellent results and carpal tunnel relief. You also may be a candidate for less invasive endoscopic surgery that requires minimal downtime and faster recovery time.

Often Non-Surgical Treatment May Be Used to Treat and Minimize Symptoms

Do you think you may have carpal tunnel symptoms?

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Carpal Tunnel Symptoms and Signs for Testing

  • Pain in hand or wrist or traveling up the arm
  • Numbness
  • Tingling
  • Loss of hand strength leading to lack of grasping and holding objects
  • Dropping things often

carpal tunnel symptomsSymptoms often show up in the base of your thumb, index, middle or ring finger. You will typically notice these more often at night but they can also be felt during the daytime.

Testing and Diagnosis

In order to determine if surgery is necessary or if you are a candidate, carpal tunnel tests may be performed. Dr. Ashford and his staff will discuss your symptoms, including your medical history, injuries and past work or sports related experiences.

X-Rays, electrosignal or electrodiagnostic studies may be used to test or confirm the severity of the nerve and ligament impact. They can also provide valuable information related to other problems or nerves that could be involved.

Why does Carpal Tunnel Occur?

Carpal tunnel syndrome can happen due to:

  • Swelling on the lining of the flexor tendons called tenosynovitis
  • Fractures of the hands, wrist, or fingers
  • Arthritis
  • Dislocated joints
  • Pregnancy and fluid retention
  • Thyroid conditions
  • Diabetes
  • Rheumatoid arthritis

Treatment Options

Either non-surgical or surgical treatment may be recommended. Often your symptoms may resolve without surgery. Based upon your condition, these treatments may be offered many or which are designed to decrease the pressure on the median nerve:

  • Alternative hand motions and patterns
  • Wrist splints to decrease or eliminate repetitive motions
  • Night splints to help relieve symptoms in the evening hours
  • Steroid injections

When non-surgical treatments do not work, your carpal tunnel syndrome may be too severe. In these situations, surgery may be your best option.

With surgical intervention, the carpal tunnel space is cleared and the tendons and nerve have more room. This is done by cutting the ligament that lies on the top of the tunnel on the palm side of the hand.

Your surgery may be performed with a minimally invasive endoscopic technique to limit scarring and lessen downtime. Dr. Ashford will discuss your treatment options after carpal tunnel testing and diagnosis is completed.

Carpal Tunnel Recovery

Following your surgery, you may experience soreness around the area for up to several months. The numbness and tingling you were experiencing prior to surgery may disappear quickly or slowly based upon your condition. For certain people, their carpal tunnel symptoms may not completely be gone especially in severe cases.

Prevent Permanent Nerve Damage From Carpal Tunnel

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