Chances are that you’ve at least heard of Carpal Tunnel Syndrome, and if you have it, then simply using your mouse and keyboard to move around this website is likely painful. This condition occurs when the median nerve, which runs down your entire arm through your wrist and into your hand, becomes compressed by the muscles and tissues that comprise the Carpal Tunnel. This is a small passageway in the wrist that allows the nerve to get where it needs to go. While this is all fairly easy to understand, what causes this kind of problem in the first place? As it turns out, quite a few things can lead to chronic wrist and hand pain, and knowing which one applies to you can often be the first step towards recovery.
Repeating the same hand and wrist motions again and again can eventually irritate and inflame the tissues of the Carpal Tunnel, causing them to swell and press down on the sensitive nerve. While it is a common side effect of office work that requires extended use of a computer, many athletes develop it as well, particularly those that play golf, tennis, or baseball.
Your genetics influence your eye color, height, complexion, and many other anatomical attributes, one of which being the size and shape of your Carpal Tunnel. Some people are simply born with a smaller than average Carpal Tunnel, which makes it easier for the nerve to become restricted. This is why the condition can often be seen in multiple members of the same family.
While CTS is a chronic condition, it can often have an acute cause, namely a fall where someone catches themselves with their wrist and hands. This type of trauma can damage the tissues in the Carpal Tunnel and lead to nerve-related pain.
Pregnancy causes a woman’s body to go through a lot of changes very quickly, and fluctuating hormones can sometimes cause swelling within the Carpal Tunnel.
Common conditions, including rheumatoid arthritis, diabetes, and a thyroid gland imbalance, have also been shown to have a strong association with Carpal Tunnel Syndrome.
The cause of Carpal Tunnel Syndrome can have a big influence on the type of care a patient needs. Conservative measures like rest, wearing a brace, and activity modification have all been shown to significantly lessen the pain and stiffness associated with the condition. To help our patients completely overcome it, we can offer non-invasive treatments like nerve hydrodissection, PRP, prolotherapy, and stem cell injections that allow for faster healing and permanent pain relief.
Living with Carpal Tunnel Syndrome can make even minor activities extremely unpleasant and painful, but there are proven ways to eliminate it that don’t involve taking drugs or undergoing surgery. To learn more about how we can finally stop your wrist/hand pain for good, contact the New England Stem Cell Institute today.