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Are You Dealing With Carpal Tunnel Syndrome?
By Northern Virginia Orthopedic Specialists
January 23, 2020
Category: Pain Management

Carpal tunnel syndrome (CTS) is an issue that affects the hand and wrist. This syndrome is linked with jobs that require repeated use of hands, like typing on a computer keyboard. Many people develop this condition regardless of their job and your Manassas and Haymarket, VA orthopaedic doctors can tell you more.

What are the symptoms of CTS?

Carpal tunnel is an opening extending from the wrist to the hand. It's made of bone and transverse carpal ligament on the other. The median nerve passes through the carpal tunnel into the hand and is responsible for sensation in the thumb, index finger, long finger, and half of the ring finger. Symptoms of CTS are a result of squeezed median nerves inside the carpal tunnel of the wrist. This medical condition is known as nerve entrapment or compressive neuropathy.

Some risks to consider that may lead to Carpal Tunnel Syndrome include:

  • force
  • posture
  • wrist alignment
  • repetition
  • temperature
  • vibration

Note that not a single risk is necessarily going to cause CTS but when several of them are repetitive, you may need to consider a healthier working environment.

What are the other causes of CTS?

  • When the tenosynovium thickens due to irritation or inflammation, this causes pressure buildup inside the carpal tunnel.
  • Trauma, like a wrist fracture, dislocation, infection, burns, bleeding disorders, and high-pressure injection injuries may result in chronic compressive neuropathy.
  • Pregnant women who retain fluids lead to extra pressure in the carpal tunnel.
  • Diabetics may also suffer from CTS as well as people with low thyroid function and those who suffer from tumors or cysts in the wrist.

How does your doctor diagnose CTS?

Your doctor first evaluates your family history and then performs a thorough physical examination. If you wake up in the middle of the night, pinch your little finger to test if it's numb and tell your doctor the result.

The doctor also uses x-rays and electrical studies of the nerves in the wrist like nerve conduction velocity (NCV) test.

What are some treatment options?

There are nonsurgical treatments like improving posture and your position while working, and surgical treatments designed to relieve pressure on the median nerve.

If you would like to speak with your Haymarket and Manassas, VA doctor, then just give us a call at (703) 369-9070 today.