Carpal tunnel syndrome
is caused by pressure on the median nerve in the wrist. The carpal tunnel is a narrow passageway located on the palm side of your wrist. This tunnel protects a main nerve (median nerve) to your hand and the nine tendons that bend your fingers. Compression of the nerve causes numbness, tingling, and, eventually, hand weakness. Carpal tunnel syndrome is more common in women and usually occurs between the ages of 35 and 40.
- Repetitive hand actions, such as using the computer, sewing, driving, etc.
- Performing functions where the wrist is bent for a long period, such as housework, ironing, carrying heavy bags, etc.
- Performing actions that require the wrists to be flexed or those where objects impact the wrist, such as carpentry, factory work, construction, or concrete work.
- Adhesions that thicken due to age.
- Pregnancy and other health conditions such as diabetes, thyroid dysfunction, etc.
- Pain and/or numbness in the palm and fingers, in one or both hands. Symptoms occur significantly more frequently in the dominant hand, especially the thumb, index finger, middle finger, and half of the ring finger.
- Weakness of the wrist and fingers, such as being unable to make a fist or dropping things easily.
- Without treatment you may notice that the muscles in your hands atrophy at certain times and symptoms worsen at night. Some patients will wake up from the pain and discomfort in their hands.