Carpal tunnel syndrome
Characterised by pain, numbness, burning or tingling sensation in the palms and in the index finger and thumb particularly at night when the wrist is flexed.
It occurs due to the compression of the median nerve at the carpal tunnel located at the wrist. The causes for these can include an injury to the wrist itself, repetitive activities through the wrist, pregnant women, under activity of the thyroid gland, over activity of the pituitary gland, diabetes or rheumatoid arthritis. Women are more likely to develop this condition.
Assessment involves identifying the cause, performing tests that will reproduce the symptoms and checking for altered sensation at the wrist or decreased strength/ muscle mass at the palms
Carpal tunnel treatment
Treatment will be aimed at restoring the function of the nerve through nerve gliding techniques, acupuncture, therapeutic ultrasound and activity modifications. This is followed by grip strengthening exercises.
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