Carpal tunnel syndrome

Common Name(s)

Carpal tunnel syndrome

Carpal tunnel syndrome (CTS) is a condition that causes pain, numbness and tingling in the hand, which may sometimes extend to the wrist and arm as well. The carpal tunnel is a structure that is found at the connection of the wrist and hand. It is formed by a layer of connective tissue that runs over the wrist bones, tendons and nerves going to the hand. CTS occurs when this area becomes tightened and inflamed, causing compression of the nerve.

Roughly 3-6% of adults are affected by CTS, and prevalence increases with age. Individuals with smaller wrists are more likely to be affected by CTS, putting women at greater risk than men. Injury or repetitive motions of the wrist may also cause CTS, such as in individuals who perform repetitive motion such as typing or handling vibrating tools. Other risk factors include conditions of the nervous system, obesity, kidney failure, and thyroid disorders. There are also familial cases of CTS.

Individuals affected by CTS will usually first experience occasional numbness or tingling in the thumb and fingers. Other early symptoms include weakness in the hand and wrist and difficulty grasping items. CTS progresses into more painful and enduring symptoms throughout the wrist region. If left untreated, the nerve and muscle may be permanently damaged. After symptoms are reported, CTS is diagnosed by physical exam, medical imaging, electrical impulse measurements, and other nerve studies.

Treatment for CTS may help prevent symptoms from progressing. Resting and applying ice to the hands may help reduce swelling. Wearing a splint, especially at night, may also help reduce symptoms. Medications, such as anti-inflammatory drugs, may be given as pills or as injections. In severe, long-term cases, surgery may be necessary. If you are experiencing CTS, talk to your doctor about the most current treatment options.

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Advocacy and Support Organizations

 

Condition Specific Organizations

Following organizations serve the condition "Carpal tunnel syndrome" for support, advocacy or research.

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General Support Organizations

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Scientific Literature

Articles from the PubMed Database

Research articles describe the outcome of a single study. They are the published results of original research.
The terms "Carpal tunnel syndrome" returned 561 free, full-text research articles on human participants. First 3 results:

Can we use thermal imaging to evaluate the effects of carpal tunnel syndrome surgical decompression?
 

Author(s): Agnieszka Baic, Teresa Kasprzyk, Michał Rżany, Agata Stanek, Karolina Sieroń, Krzysztof Suszyński, Wiesław Marcol, Armand Cholewka

Journal: Medicine (Baltimore). 2017 Sep;96(39):e7982.

 

Research is intended to verify if thermal imaging can be used in diagnosing and monitoring the carpal tunnel syndrome (CTS).This disease is not easy to diagnose using traditional methods. Also, the difficulties in monitoring carpal tunnel surgery effects necessitate new, noninvasive ...

Last Updated: 31 Dec 1969

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Carpal tunnel syndrome among laboratory technicians in relation to personal and ergonomic factors at work.
 

Author(s): Mohamed El-Helaly, Hanan H Balkhy, Laura Vallenius

Journal: J Occup Health. 2017 Nov;59(6):513-520.

 

Work-related carpal tunnel syndrome (CTS) has been reported in different occupations, including laboratory technicians, so this study was carried out to determine the prevalence and the associated personal and ergonomic factors for CTS among laboratory technicians.

Last Updated: 31 Dec 1969

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Facilitatory and inhibitory pain mechanisms are altered in patients with carpal tunnel syndrome.
 

Author(s): Benjamin Soon, Bill Vicenzino, Annina B Schmid, Michel W Coppieters

Journal:

 

Preliminary evidence from studies using quantitative sensory testing suggests the presence of central mechanisms in patients with carpal tunnel syndrome (CTS) as apparent by widespread hyperalgesia. Hallmarks of central mechanisms after nerve injuries include nociceptive facilitation ...

Last Updated: 31 Dec 1969

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Reviews from the PubMed Database

Review articles summarize what is currently known about a disease. They discuss research previously published by others.
The terms "Carpal tunnel syndrome" returned 54 free, full-text review articles on human participants. First 3 results:

Conservative therapeutic management of carpal tunnel syndrome.
 

Author(s): Roberto Sérgio Martins, Mário Gilberto Siqueira

Journal: Arq Neuropsiquiatr. 2017 Nov;75(11):819-824.

 

Carpal tunnel syndrome is the most prevalent nerve compression and can be clinically or surgically treated. In most cases, the first therapeutic alternative is conservative treatment but there is still much controversy regarding the most effective modality of this treatment. In this ...

Last Updated: 31 Dec 1969

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Importance of Recognizing Carpal Tunnel Syndrome for Neurosurgeons: A Review.
 

Author(s): Masatoshi Yunoki, Takahiro Kanda, Kenta Suzuki, Atsuhito Uneda, Koji Hirashita, Kimihiro Yoshino

Journal: Neurol. Med. Chir. (Tokyo). 2017 Apr;57(4):172-183.

 

Idiopathic carpal tunnel syndrome (CTS) is a common complaint, reflecting entrapment neuropathy of the upper extremity. CTS produces symptoms similar to those of other conditions, such as cervical spondylosis or ischemic or neoplastic intracranial disease. Because of these overlaps, ...

Last Updated: 31 Dec 1969

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Carpal Tunnel Syndrome: Diagnosis and Management.
 

Author(s): Jennifer Wipperman, Kyle Goerl

Journal: Am Fam Physician. 2016 Dec;94(12):993-999.

 

Carpal tunnel syndrome, the most common entrapment neuropathy of the upper extremity, is caused by compression of the median nerve as it travels through the carpal tunnel. Classically, patients with the condition experience pain and paresthesias in the distribution of the median nerve, ...

Last Updated: 31 Dec 1969

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Clinical Trial Information This information is provided by ClinicalTrials.gov

Sonographic Evaluation of Patients With Carpal Tunnel Syndrome Following Steroid Injection
 

Status: Recruiting

Condition Summary: Carpal Tunnel Syndrome

 

Last Updated: 24 Apr 2017

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Effectiveness of Neurodynamic Techniques for the Treatment of Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
 

Status: Recruiting

Condition Summary: Carpal Tunnel Syndrome

 

Last Updated: 24 Oct 2017

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Assessment of the Effectiveness of Ultrasound-guided Acupuncture in the Management of Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
 

Status: Not yet recruiting

Condition Summary: Carpal Tunnel Syndrome

 

Last Updated: 18 Aug 2016

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