There’s a Lack of Feeling in My Life…

Carpal tunnel syndrome (CTS) or Median Neuropathy at the Wrist is a medical condition in which the median nerve is compressed at the wrist, leading to pain, paresthesias, and muscle weakness in the forearm and hand. A form of compressive neuropathy, CTS is more common in women than it is in men and, though it can occur at any age, has a peak incidence around age 42. The lifetime risk for CTS is around 10% of the adult population.

Most cases of CTS are idiopathic (without known cause). Repetitive activities are often blamed for the development of CTS along with several other possible causes. However, the correlation is often unclear.

It is a multi‐faceted problem and can therefore be challenging to treat. Still, there are a multitude of possible treatments: treating any possible underlying disease or condition, immobilizing braces, physiotherapy, massage therapy, medication, prioritizing hand activities, ergonomics, et cetera. Ultimately, carpal tunnel release surgery may be required in which outcomes are generally good.

The condition was first noted in medical literature in the early 1900s.

CTS diagram

IN OTHER WORDS: CTS occurs when the carpal tunnel is too tightly packed. Added pressure closes off the minute blood vessels that feed the median nerve. Blood congests here, frequently at night, when the handsare relatively inactive. The result is like static on a telephone line: distorted and confused messages. The hand tingles, and the muscles gradually lose their tone.

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