Carpal Tunnel Carly was desperate to find relief for her hand pain and numbness when she visited the Hand Surgery Specialists of Texas. Over time, as Carpal Tunnel Carly excessively typed at her office job as a receptionist, she had developed wrist pain, numbness and tingling in some of her fingers, and weakness of her grip. And since typing is the main part of Carpal Tunnel Carly’s job, her hand trouble was preventing her from typing up a storm!
“I first started noticing my symptoms at work,” Carpal Tunnel Carly explained to her doctor at the Hand Surgery Specialists of Texas, “but now the pain is almost unbearable during the night, too!” The doctor asked her if she had noticed any other symptoms, such as pain that radiates from her hand and wrist to other parts of her body, such as her neck and shoulders. When Carpal Tunnel Carly explained that she was also experiencing those symptoms, the doctor decided that she required a test to solidify the diagnosis. Given Carpal Tunnel Carly’s symptoms, the doctor believed she was suffering from carpal tunnel syndrome, a common hand condition that occurs when there is pressure on the median nerve in the wrist. This pressure is usually a result of repetitive hand motions and causes numbness, tingling and weakness in the hand.
There are a few physical tests that can be used to aid in the diagnosis of carpal tunnel syndrome. Electromyogram (EMG) and Nerve Conduction Velocity (NCV) are commonly used because they offer an objective diagnosis. EMG measures the electrical activity of muscles at rest and during contraction. NCV studies how well and how fast the nerves can send electrical signals. If the electrical activity of the nerves and muscles in the test results is abnormal, it can help the doctor determine that a nerve or muscle problem exists.
After the test, the doctor told Carpal Tunnel Carly that her test results solidified the diagnosis of carpal tunnel syndrome. The doctor also said that her condition likely developed from the repetitive hand motions, such as typing and stapling, that she performs at her job.
While Carpal Tunnel Carly was relieved that the doctor knew her diagnosis, she was still concerned about the treatment. Due to Carly’s medical history of not previously having carpal tunnel syndrome, the doctor recommended the minimally invasive endoscopic carpal tunnel release for her, also known as the No Stitch procedure.
The No Stitch procedure is performed using a small endoscope that is guided through a small incision in the wrist. The endoscope lets the doctor see structures in the wrist, without opening the entire area with a large incision, as you would with the traditional open carpal tunnel surgery. During the No Stitch procedure, the transverse carpal ligament is cut, which is the flexible cord that lies on top of the carpal tunnel at the wrist. This releases pressure on the median nerve, which relieves carpal tunnel syndrome symptoms.
Carly was able to have the minimally invasive endoscopic carpal tunnel release done that day, and it took less than 10 minutes. But the best part for Carly was that the procedure required no stitches, therefore it left no scar.
Carly felt relief for hand pain the evening of the surgery, while numbness and tingling in her fingers will improve over time. Now, after a proper recovery, Carly is back to tapping away at her keyboard, and emailing everyone in the office!
Are you suffering from similar symptoms to Carly? Make an appointment with the Hand Surgery Specialists of Texas today, and get your hands back to tediously typing!