Carpal tunnel syndrome makes your hand and wrist alternately numb and painful, problems that only get worse over time. If you're experiencing the disabling symptoms of carpal tunnel syndrome, expert sports and spine medicine physician Tariq Hilal, DO, of South Coast Sports and Spine Medicine in Los Alamitos, California, can help. Dr. Hilal uses innovative approaches like median nerve hydrodissection to relieve your pain without the need for steroid injections or surgery. To find effective relief from carpal tunnel symptoms, call South Coast Sports and Spine Medicine, or book an appointment online.
Carpal tunnel syndrome is a progressive condition affecting the nerves in your wrist. The carpal tunnel is a bony passageway inside your wrist, through which the median nerve travels to reach your hand.
There are also tendons and ligaments in your carpal tunnel, all of which play a role in hand function. One of these is the transverse carpal ligament, which extends over the top of your carpal tunnel.
If the synovial tissue that protects your flexor tendons swells, it can trap the median nerve between the transverse carpal ligament and your carpal tunnel bones, causing carpal tunnel syndrome.
Carpal tunnel syndrome causes steadily worsening discomfort and pain in your hand and wrist. The pain and other symptoms are worse on the thumb side of your hand but don't affect the little finger side.
As well as pain in your hand and wrist, you might experience:
Because the median nerve goes right up to your shoulder, untreated carpal tunnel syndrome can sometimes result in these symptoms extending along your arm. Symptoms are often worse at night due to your wrist bending over as you sleep, making the nerve compression worse.
Usually, several factors come together to cause the nerve compression responsible for carpal tunnel syndrome.
These factors include repetitive strain injury to the wrist, excessive hand or wrist flexion, pregnancy, and having chronic conditions like hypothyroidism, rheumatoid arthritis, or diabetes.
Dr. Hilal offers in-house EMG (electromyogram) and nerve conduction studies to precisely and accurately diagnose carpal tunnel syndrome.
Carpal tunnel treatment begins with conservative care. Dr. Hilal might advise changing your usual activities to reduce pressure on your wrist and wearing a brace or splint. A properly fitted brace or splint is especially helpful at night as it stops your wrist from bending over, which often causes severe symptoms upon waking.
Physical and occupational therapy referrals are also important in easing inflammation and helping you use your hand and wrist without worsening your condition.
The traditional treatment for carpal tunnel cases resistant to conservative treatments is a corticosteroid injection to the median nerve. However, Dr. Hilal uses a therapy that offers longer-lasting improvement and better results.
This treatment is called median nerve hydrodissection, which uses a jet of isotonic fluid from a needle tip to separate the median nerve and alleviate pressure in your carpal tunnel. Dr. Hilal carries out this procedure using ultrasound-guided intervention to ensure pinpoint accuracy.
To benefit from this innovative treatment for carpal tunnel syndrome, call South Coast Sports and Spine Medicine or book an appointment online today.