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Angus Keogh Procedures – Carpal Tunnel Release

Carpal Tunnel Release

Carpal Tunnel Syndrome is a condition of the hand characterised typically by numbness and pain in the hand, usually felt in the thumb, index and middle fingers. It usually affects people more at night and can sometimes be exacerbated by heavy use of the hand (I typically see this in cleaners and weightlifters). It can manifest in a variety of ways not typical of the usual pattern of carpal tunnel syndrome, and indeed other problems, such as neck problems, can mimic carpal tunnel syndrome. Some people have mainly symptoms of stiffness in the hand, or swelling; others pain all the way to the shoulder. It can on occasion get very confusing and a multitude of investigations are required to sort out which problem is causing what symptom.

Usually, carpal tunnel syndrome is treated with an operation if the symptoms warrant it (i.e. waking at night, pain in the hand at work with repetitive activities). This involves a simple day case procedure with either a small incision in the palm of the hand, or alternatively two even smaller incisions to enable the use of an endoscope (endoscopic carpal tunnel release using a telescope-like instrument).

Patients are usually extremely grateful once they have the procedure done as their quality of sleep is vastly improved. On occasion, some people start to realise that they have carpal tunnel on the opposite side because that side starts waking them up once the really troubling hand is fixed!

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