Carpal tunnel syndrome causes mild to severe numbness and tingling in your hands that can make it difficult to perform simple tasks with your hands. Pain management specialist Khalique Rehman, MD, at My Pain Clinic in suburban Atlanta is an expert at creating individualized treatment plans that reduce the symptoms and address the causes of carpal tunnel syndrome. My Pain Clinic has convenient locations in Stockbridge and Norcross, Georgia. Call or use the online booking tool to make an appointment.
The carpal tunnel is a narrow opening within the wrist that’s formed by small bones — called carpal bones — held together by a band of tough, fibrous tissue. The median nerve, which is responsible for sensation in your thumb and index, middle, and ring fingers, travels down your forearm and through the carpal tunnel. The median nerve also controls the muscles at the base of the thumb. Flexor tendons, which cause your fingers to bend, also pass through the carpal tunnel opening. Carpal tunnel syndrome occurs when the opening narrows or the tissue covering the flexor tendons become inflamed and crowds or “pinches” the median nerve.
Symptoms usually occur gradually, may come and go at first, typically worsen over time, and may include:
Dr. Rehman performs a physical examination that includes simple testing of your hands and fingers for areas of weakness, abnormal sensation, and muscle weakness around the base of the thumb. He may recommend an electromyography (EMG) and nerve conduction study that evaluates the health of muscles and nerves with a simple procedure performed in the office. Dr. Rehman may also obtain certain diagnostic studies, including X-rays or an MRI scan, to rule out other conditions as the cause of your pain, such as arthritis or a hidden wrist fracture.
For early or mild symptoms, Dr. Rehman initially prescribes the use of a wrist brace to keep your wrist straight and relieve pressure on the median nerve in the carpal tunnel. He might also recommend anti-inflammatory medications, vitamin B complex, physical therapy, and corticosteroid injections into the carpal tunnel to decrease inflammation.
These treatments generally relieve the symptoms of carpal tunnel syndrome. If, however, these measures aren’t effective, Dr. Rehman may recommend surgical intervention to relieve pressure in the area by dividing the ligament or fibrous tissue covering the carpal tunnel. This eliminates the numbness, tingling, and pain associated with the crowded or pinched median nerve.
If carpal tunnel syndrome is causing you pain and interfering with your daily routine, Dr. Rehman at My Pain Clinic can help. Call or book your appointment online today.