Carpal Tunnel Syndrome

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Carpal tunnel syndrome feels like numbness, weakness, pain and tingling in the wrist, hand and fingers. It’s caused by pinching or pressure on the median nerve as it runs through a tunnel of bone, ligaments and tendons in the wrist.

Carpal tunnel syndrome symptoms often occur from the thumb to the ring finger. Symptoms tend to come on while using tools that vibrate or require repetitive gripping. Symptoms also can flare up at night, causing some patients to wake up with numbness and tingling in the hands.

Often the cause of the pinching on the median nerve is unknown.

Carpal tunnel treatments include over-the-counter pain medications, steroid injections, physical therapy exercises and bracing. In severe cases with nerve damage, sometimes after years without treatment, surgery is required to relieve symptoms.

Carpal tunnel syndrome is one of the most common conditions treated by arm and hand medical providers.

The Norton Arm & Hand Institute specialists have offices in downtown Louisville, St. Matthews and on the Norton Brownsboro Hospital campus, with appointments often available within a week — sometimes the same day. Our fellowship-trained and board-certified physicians have the experience and expertise to know when conservative treatment approaches can help and when surgery will be the only potential source of relief.

Carpal Tunnel Syndrome Symptoms

Carpal tunnel symptoms usually are felt in the forearm and hand along the median nerve path. Symptoms include:

  • Numbness, tingling, and pain in your thumb and the first three fingers of the hand
  • Pain and burning that travels up the arm
  • Wrist pain at night that interferes with sleep
  • Weakness in the muscles of the hand, to the point of sometimes dropping items

Treatment for Carpal Tunnel Syndrome

Diagnosing carpal tunnel syndrome early is key to preventing deterioration that can lead to more severe symptoms and possibly require surgery. Delaying or avoiding treatment can result in permanent nerve damage. Ways to relieve early mild symptoms include:

  • Avoiding activities that make symptoms worse
  • Taking frequent breaks to rest or stretch the hands
  • Applying cold packs
  • Taking pain-relieving over-the-counter medication

See your health care provider if you have signs and symptoms of carpal tunnel syndrome that interfere with your normal activities and sleep.

Why Choose Norton Arm & Hand Institute

  • The largest group of arm and hand providers in the state, at four locations in Louisville, offers comprehensive treatment — often without surgery.
  • Our providers offer treatments for common conditions such as carpal tunnel, arthritis, ganglion cyst, mallet finger, trigger finger, numbness in the hands and wrists, and fractures of the fingers, hand, wrist and elbow.
  • Norton Arm & Hand Institute specialists include national leaders in treating the unique needs of growing children.
  • Get an appointment within a week and sometimes the same day.
  • Medicare, Medicaid, workers’ compensation and most major commercial insurance plans accepted.
  • Book appointments, get alerts when an earlier appointment becomes available, communicate with your medical provider, refill prescriptions and more through your free Norton MyChart account.

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