Carpal Tunnel Syndrome is a condition of the hand where the median nerve, which runs the length of the arm, is compressed within the carpal tunnel, a narrow passageway in the wrist. As tissues swell within the carpal tunnel and press on the median nerve, you may notice symptoms like numbness and tingling in the fingers, particularly the thumb, index finger, long finger, and half of the ring finger, as well as weakness, pain, and an inability to do certain tasks, like button a shirt.
A hand doctor may suggest a surgical procedure to address your condition. Carpal tunnel release surgery aims to make more room for the median nerve and tendons within the carpal tunnel, decreasing the pressure on the nerve. There are a couple different methods of achieving this result: open release surgery and endoscopic carpal tunnel release. While the procedures differ, they both endeavor to relive the pressure on the median nerve within the carpal tunnel. Your hand specialist should explain the procedure they suggest and why it’s the preferred method for your specific case. When evaluating a hand surgeon to do a carpal tunnel surgery, ask if they have undergone the intensive vetting and practice standards required to be a Fellow of the American College of Surgeons (FACS), as it indicates that the doctor has passed a rigorous evaluation of their professional competence, qualifications, ethical fitness and education.
Carpal tunnel surgery is typically done as an outpatient procedure, so you can expect to go home the same day as surgery, if the surgery proceeds as expected. Patients typically have stitches that close the incision or incisions from the procedure, and can expect to have the hand bandaged. Your hand doctor will want to see you back in the office within a week or two of the carpal tunnel surgery to remove bandages and possibly stitches, as well as to evaluate your healing process. After surgery, you may be required to elevate the hand, and/or do some physical therapy to optimize the outcome.
If you are looking to talk to a hand surgeon who specializes in carpal tunnel surgery, the doctors at Midwest Hand Surgery are ready to see you. Please call 630-359-6888 or click to request an appointment.
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