Carpal Tunnel Syndrome

South Valley Neurology

Neurologists & Pediatric Neurologists located in Morgan Hill, CA & San Jose, CA

Researchers estimate that carpal tunnel syndrome affects 1-5% of the adult population. This common condition, caused by median nerve compression, can make it painful, and in some cases nearly impossible, to type, use hand tools, or grasp objects. At South Valley Neurology, the expert team provides on-site diagnosis and treatment of carpal tunnel syndrome. Call the office in San Jose, California, for pediatric care or the office in Morgan Hill, California, for teenagers and adults, or use the online booking tool to schedule an appointment today.

Carpal Tunnel Syndrome Q & A

What is carpal tunnel syndrome?

Carpal tunnel syndrome is a painful condition that occurs as a result of undue pressure on your median nerve. The median nerve provides sensations to your first four fingers and wrist, in addition to controlling basic hand movements. 

If your median nerve becomes compressed, it can negatively affect the function of your hands and fingers, making it difficult to work or perform other routine tasks. Carpal tunnel syndrome gets worse over time, so it’s important to seek treatment as soon as possible.

What are the symptoms of carpal tunnel syndrome?

Common symptoms of carpal tunnel syndrome include:

  • Swollen fingers
  • Tingling and numbness that affects your fingers, forearms, or wrists
  • Weakness
  • Shock-like sensations
  • Poor coordination

As carpal tunnel syndrome progresses, you might find it difficult to make a fist or hold objects like pens, pencils, or hand tools for more than a few minutes.

Who is at risk of carpal tunnel syndrome?

Carpal tunnel syndrome affects all types of people, but certain factors can increase your risk. These factors include anatomic conditions like fractures, dislocations, or joint abnormalities; obesity; and certain prescription medications.

You’re also more likely to experience carpal tunnel syndrome if you work a physically demanding job. This is especially true if you work with vibrating tools or on an assembly line that requires repetitive hand movements or flexing of your wrists.

How is carpal tunnel syndrome diagnosed?

The team at South Valley Neurology diagnoses carpal tunnel syndrome by reviewing your medical history, conducting a physical exam, and asking questions about your symptoms and lifestyle, including what time of day you experience the most pain and if there are any particular activities that trigger tingling or numbness.

The team also orders electromyography (EMG). EMG measures the electrical charges produced by your muscles and nerves. It can quickly and safely diagnose median nerve damage. 

How is carpal tunnel syndrome treated?

Treatment for carpal tunnel syndrome depends on the intensity of your symptoms and their effect on your work and quality of life. Usually, the team at South Valley Neurology recommends conservative measures like taking frequent breaks to rest your hands, avoiding activities that trigger your symptoms, and applying ice regularly.

If your symptoms persist or get worse, more intensive treatments may be necessary. The team might recommend wrist splinting, prescription medication, or corticosteroid injections. If your wrist pain fails to respond to these treatments, you might benefit from surgical intervention.

To learn more about treatment for carpal tunnel syndrome, schedule an appointment at South Valley Neurology. Book a consultation online, or call the nearest office to speak with a caring staff member today.