Symptoms of carpal tunnel syndrome include pain and numbness in the hand--especially the thumb and first two fingers--that worsen during the night. As the entrapment condition develops, people might experience decreased grip strength and increased intensity of symptoms during the day.
The treatment for carpal tunnel syndrome begins with the patient wearing a brace at night to take pressure off the median nerve. Anti-inflammatory drugs and cortisone injections can also help decrease the swelling. When these therapies are ineffective, surgery becomes an option.
During surgery for carpal tunnel syndrome, the Center’s surgeon relieves pressure on the nerve by cutting the ligament at the base of the wrist. Patients typically undergo physical therapy after surgery to restore wrist strength.
Symptoms of cubital tunnel syndrome include weakness, pain and numbness in the hand or elbow.
Resting the elbow can provide relief, as well as wearing a splint and taking anti-inflammatory drugs to reduce swelling. If these non-invasive approaches don’t result in significant reduction of pain and improvement of function, surgery may be necessary.
Symptoms include numbness or tingling in the outside of the thigh and at the hip. There may also be sharp, shooting pain and a burning feeling. Meralgia paresthetica is often a byproduct of obesity, but it is also found in people who wear restrictive clothes or in athletes who repeatedly extend their hips.
Heavy patients are advised to lose weight and do exercises to strengthen core abdominal muscles. Wearing looser clothing and taking measures to protect the hips during exercise may also be recommended. Rest can be helpful, as well as taking anti-inflammatory drugs.
This condition usually improves with time and the above interventions. In chronic and long-term cases, surgery may be considered to release the entrapped nerve.
Tarsal tunnel syndrome causes numbness, burning and pain in the sole of the foot, and is most commonly found in active adults.
Resting and elevating the foot, wearing arch supports and wider shoes, and taking anti-inflammatory drugs is the first course of action. When these measures are ineffective, the Center’s physicians may recommend surgery to cut a ligament and release the entrapped nerve.