The following blog post is the first in a series designed to provide some basic background information on carpal tunnel syndrome, a serious repetitive stress injury that afflicts millions of workers throughout the United States each year.
What is carpal tunnel syndrome?
The carpal tunnel is actually a small tube located on the inner arm that is comprised of various ligaments, bones and tendons. Its primary function is to protect the major nerve (the median nerve) that travels through it.
The median nerve enables a person to move/feel the following: thumb, index finger, middle finger and the vertical half of their ring finger facing the middle finger.
Simply put, carpal tunnel syndrome is caused by pressure on the median nerve.
What are some of the warning signs or symptoms of carpal tunnel syndrome?
According to the Mayo Clinic, it is not uncommon for carpal tunnel syndrome to start with an indistinct soreness in your wrist that may radiate to your hand and/or forearm.
Other symptoms include the following:
• Pain that spreads outward from your wrist up to your shoulder or pain that spreads downward from your wrist through your fingers
• Weakness in your hands, manifested by an inability to hold onto objects
• Numbness throughout your thumb, index finger, middle finger and the vertical half of their ring finger facing the middle finger. (Many people experience this symptom while holding an object or shortly after waking up. It may become permanent over time.)
If you have questions or concerns about carpal tunnel syndrome, it is imperative that you speak with an experienced medical professional.
Stay tuned for the next post …
• Carpal Tunnel Syndrome (Mayo Clinic)