Carpal Tunnel Syndrome – When Surgery Is Needed
Carpal Tunnel Syndrome is experienced by many people. This is a painful condition that results from the compression of the median nerve within the wrist.
Many factors can cause the development of this condition. The main cause of the syndrome has never been established, although connections have been made to different activities or jobs.
It is easily reversible when caught in its early stage. If the condition has been ignored and the symptoms have worsened overtime, a surgical intervention may need to be considered.
Carpal Tunnel Release is the name of the surgical procedure. It can be done under local or general anaesthetic, depending on the patient’s decision. Whichever way the patient wants to have it done, he/she will have to discuss it with the doctor. The patient may need to be admitted to the facility the night before for preparation for surgery if he/she decides to do it under general anaesthetic.
The palm of the affected hand will be incised by the surgeon during the operation. A longer incision may be needed to be done if the syndrome is particularly severe. The surgeon cuts through the exposed tissue beneath using a scalpel. The transverse carpal ligament is revealed as a result of this second incision. This exposed ligament contributes to the compression of the median nerve.
The ligament which is putting pressure on the median nerve is cut, releasing the pressure on the nerve. The next step is to suture closed the incision made in the palm of the hand.
The severed ends of the ligament will now start to heal. This healing process will result to a scar formation, that should not press so hard on the underlying nerve.
The carpal tunnel release can be done to both wrists at the same operation, if both of them are affected. This is called a bilateral carpal tunnel release surgery.
One must also realize that possible complications can happen after the surgery. These complications may include median nerve injury, ulnar nerve damage or injury to the blood vessels surrounding the area.
The patient will need to plan ahead about who can help at home after discharge from the hospital. If the patient is released within two days after surgery, he/she will probably need someone else to help around the house. There is the need to continue to take the medications as prescribed by the doctor. If there is swelling in the affected area, cold packs can be used at regular intervals. The patient needs to make sure to rest the hand as much as possible for at least four weeks following the surgery.
There should be a significant ease of the symptoms from Carpal Tunnel Syndrome after surgery. Although the pain in the incision site can linger for months. If the the discomfort is a concern, the patient need to consult the doctor.