"I've been waking up several times a night and my hand is asleep. I have to shake it to wake it up and, often, I can't get back to sleep."
These symptoms may sound familiar to many of you, especially if you perform repetitive movements with your hands on the job or at home. Carpal Tunnel Syndrome (CTS) is catching up to low back pain as a leading cause for lost time from work as well as long-term disability.
The reason this condition is so common is that the muscle tendons and a nerve (in this case the median nerve) travel through a narrow space made up of the wrist's carpal bones (carpal tunnel). Not just work related activities cause CTS. Any condition that causes swelling inside the tunnel can cause or contribute to the CTS including pregnancy, thyroid deficiency, birth control pills, and many others. In repetitive motion jobs as the fingers work quickly, especially with pinching movements, the wrist assumes positions of extreme motion such as bending up or down and the tendons rub together excessively, producing friction and swelling. This increases the pressure inside the small bony tunnel, and the median nerve is pressed upwards into a ligament which serves as the roof of the tunnel. The symptoms of numbness, tingling and sometimes pain affecting the thumb, index, and/or third finger usually come on slow and gradual. Hence, the patient usually waits, often a long time, before coming in for an examination and treatment.
Many of our patients are surprised when they learn chiropractors can diagnose and treat CTS and often avoid the need for a surgical procedure. The key to success in the non-surgical treatment of CTS is early detection, so if you are suffering from this common problem, don't wait! Have it checked out before it reaches a surgical level.
404 Eureka Street
Ripon WI 54971
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