Neurology Specialists located in Mt. Pleasant, SC & Goose Creek, SC
Carpal tunnel syndrome begins as a mild, slightly annoying pain or tingling in your hand and wrist. But without treatment, the condition can progress to cause permanent nerve damage. The skilled team at Tidewater Neurology treats carpal tunnel syndrome with comprehensive therapies that ease your symptoms and restore normal function. Don't wait to get help for carpal tunnel syndrome. To schedule an appointment, call the office in Mt. Pleasant, Goose Creek, or the West Ashley area of Charleston, South Carolina, or use the online booking feature today.
Carpal Tunnel Q & A
What is carpal tunnel syndrome?
Carpal tunnel syndrome develops when you have a pinched median nerve. The median nerves run down both arms and into your hands. The nerve and several tendons pass through your wrist by going through a narrow opening called the carpal tunnel. Any problem affecting the tissues in the tunnel can lead to carpal tunnel syndrome.
What causes carpal tunnel syndrome?
Carpal tunnel syndrome develops from several possible causes, including:
If you frequently repeat the same hand and finger movements, the tendons and nerves become irritated and inflamed.
Wrist flexion and extension
Performing manual activities with your wrist bent down (flexion) or up (extension) puts pressure on the nerve and leads to carpal tunnel syndrome.
Injuries that damage the bones or soft tissues in your wrist can end up pinching the nerve.
A smaller-than-normal carpal tunnel, diabetes, and inflammatory conditions such as rheumatoid arthritis increase your risk for carpal tunnel syndrome.
What symptoms indicate I have carpal tunnel syndrome?
Your initial symptoms may be mild and come and go. As the condition worsens, you experience:
- Hand and wrist pain
- Hand, thumb, or finger weakness
- Electric-shock sensations in your wrist and hand
- Tingling or burning in your thumb or first three fingers
- Numbness in your hand or fingers
- A sensation that you have swollen fingers (when they’re not)
The longer you go without treatment, the higher your chances are of developing permanent nerve damage.
How is carpal tunnel syndrome treated?
When you get help for carpal tunnel syndrome at an early stage, your Tidewater Neurology provider uses conservative therapies to relieve your symptoms and give the nerve time to heal.
At this stage, your treatment may include:
- Immobilizing your wrist (usually while you sleep)
- Changing or limiting hand activities to reduce stress
- Improving ergonomics to avoid bending your wrist
- Taking nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medications
- Practicing nerve gliding exercises
- Getting a steroid injection
- Getting a nerve block
If your symptoms don't improve or you already have a severely damaged nerve, your Tidewater Neurology provider recommends outpatient surgery called carpal tunnel release. The procedure takes the pressure off the nerve by cutting the ligament covering the carpal tunnel.
To ease your symptoms and prevent serious nerve damage, seek treatment at the earliest sign of carpal tunnel syndrome. Call Tidewater Neurology or book an appointment online today.