Carpal Tunnel Syndrome a type of neuropathy or nerve disorder that often strikes people whose occupation requires repetitive movements of the hands and fingers.
Frequent repetitive motions such as typing and use of a mouse accompanied by poor ergonomics can lead to this condition.
Carpal Tunnel Syndrome (CTS) is a painful and often debilitating disorder affecting the hands and wrists.
The symptoms of carpal tunnel syndrome include numbness and tingling in the hands. Numbness and tingling primarily affects the thumb and thumb pad, index, middle, and inner half of the ring fingers.
Many sufferers of CTS report increased symptoms at night and this can interfere with getting adequate sleep. Advanced stages of carpal tunnel syndrome result in decreased fine dexterity movements of the fingers.
Movements such as buttoning a shirt or grasping objects can become difficult. In addition, the thenar pad (palms) may undergo muscle atrophy (shrinking) and the patient will usually experience decreased muscle grip strength.
The median nerve is one of the major nerves that supplies the arms, hands and fingers of the upper extremity.
Carpal Tunnel Syndrome occurs when the median nerve is compressed in the carpal tunnel. The carpal tunnel is a narrow passageway in the wrist formed by the carpal bones and the transverse carpal ligament. This ligament is a strip of tendon that supports the wrist near the carpal bones.
Carpal tunnel syndrome is often results from a combination of factors causing pressure on the median nerve and tendons in the carpal tunnel. The medical condition can also be due to a congenital predisposition.
Symptoms of carpal tunnel can be caused by inflammation to the median nerve in other areas besides the wrist.
Another area of median nerve root entrapment includes a ligament near the elbow called Struthers’ ligament. This ligament is found in about 10% of the population and can sometimes lead to median nerve entrapment and even ulnar nerve entrapment.
Symptoms of median nerve entrapment can also occur in an area near the shoulder called the thoracic outlet. Nerve root irritation in the cervical spine of the neck can also cause symptoms that resemble carpal tunnel.
It is important to note that true carpal tunnel is inflammation of the median nerve in the carpal tunnel of the wrist.
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