Dunedin Carpal Tunnel Syndrome Doctor
Repetitive tasks put a lot of wear and tear on the body. Even constantly typing on computers or phones, may strain the wrists. This can eventually cause carpal tunnel syndrome.
The median nerve runs between the hand and the forearm via the carpal tunnel in the wrist. If this nerve is compressed in the wrist area, carpal tunnel syndrome may result.
If your wrist is bothering you, carpal tunnel syndrome may be to blame. A Dunedin carpal tunnel syndrome doctor can conduct tests to determine the cause of your pain. Together you and your doctor can devise a treatment plan to help you get back to the activities you love.
Carpel Tunnel Syndrome Symptoms
A person should suspect carpal tunnel syndrome if they are experiencing any of the following symptoms:
- Tingling, numbness, or burning in the fingers
- Pain that travels from the arm to the shoulder
- Hand weakness that may make it difficult to use fine motor skills
- Repeatedly dropping items because of weakness or numbness in the hand
- Sensations akin to shock in the hand and fingers
Symptoms may initially come and go, but will generally grow worse over time. Many people additionally experience sleep issues when symptoms wake them. Even though carpal tunnel syndrome does not cause finger swelling, many patients feel as if their fingers are swollen. Because of this, their ability to grip may decrease, making the performance of manual tasks more difficult.
Although repetitive actions such as typing are a major cause of carpal tunnel syndrome, they are not the only risk factors. Other issues that may increase the risk of carpal tunnel syndrome include:
- Rheumatoid arthritis
- Overactive pituitary gland
- Underactive thyroid gland
- Tumor or cyst in the carpal tunnel
- Wrist or hand trauma
Women are at greater risk of developing carpal tunnel syndrome than men. This may be due to the fact that women’s wrists are generally smaller, as is their carpal tunnel. Symptoms generally start in the person’s dominant hand, and although the pain may spread to both hands, it is usually worse in the dominant hand.
Seeking Treatment in Dunedin
The doctor will usually perform a physical examination and take a complete medical history. They may also conduct tests to check the response of the hand, wrist, and fingers. The doctor may additionally order some specific imaging tests, such as ultrasound, to determine the condition of the median nerve.
Other potential tests a doctor may conduct include a nerve conduction study that measures the nerve signals in the arm and hand and can indicate the severity of the signaling issue. An X-ray may be used to show whether there are any fractures in the hand or wrist that may actually be to blame for the symptoms. Blood tests may reveal low thyroid levels or other factors that may increase the likelihood of carpal tunnel syndrome.
Many people respond well to conservative treatment, which includes the use of over-the-counter non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) for pain relief, splinting the wrists at night, and minimizing the activities that are contributing to carpal tunnel syndrome. If conservative treatment is unsuccessful, surgery may be necessary to correct the condition. These surgeries are performed on an out-patient basis. Surgery provides relief from pain, but it may take a few months before patients can go back to a full-time work schedule if their job includes the type of repetitive motions that exacerbate carpal tunnel syndrome.
Contact a Dunedin Carpal Tunnel Syndrome Doctor Today
If carpal tunnel is preventing you from doing the activities you love, you have options. A Dunedin carpal tunnel syndrome doctor can help you find a treatment that can help you get the most out of your professional and personal life. Call today to learn more.