Carpal Tunnel Surgery

Carpal Tunnel Surgery is an invasive procedure where the Transverse Carpal Ligament is severed to relieve pressure on the median nerve.

Carpal tunnel syndrome occurs when the median nerve, which runs from the forearm into the hand, becomes pressed or squeezed at the wrist. The median nerve controls sensations to the palm side of the thumb and fingers barring the little finger, as well as impulses to some small muscles in the hand that allow the fingers and thumb to move. The carpal tunnel is a narrow, rigid passageway of ligament and bones at the base of the hand and contains the median nerve and tendons. Sometimes, thickening from irritated tendons or other swelling narrows the tunnel and causes the median nerve to be compressed. As a result patient may feel pain, weakness, or numbness in the hand and wrist, radiating up the arm.

Surgery is done under local anesthesia and patient is released the same day. Many patients require surgery on both hands. There are two types of carpal tunnel release surgery - Open release surgery and Endoscopic surgery.

Although symptoms may be relieved immediately after surgery, full recovery from carpal tunnel surgery can take months. Some patients may have infection, nerve damage, stiffness, and pain at the scar. Some times, the patient may experience lose of strength in wrists because the carpal ligament is cut. Patients should undergo physical therapy after surgery to restore wrist strength. Some patients may need to adjust job duties or even change jobs after recovery from surgery.

Recurrence of carpal tunnel syndrome following treatment is rare. The majority of patients recover completely.

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