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The Dangers of Delaying Carpal Tunnel Surgery

The Dangers of Delaying Carpal Tunnel Surgery
The Dangers of Delaying Carpal Tunnel Surgery

The Dangers of Delaying Carpal Tunnel Surgery

Carpal tunnel syndrome is characterized by compression of the median nerve in your wrist. The median nerve's compression of the carpal tunnel leads to pain, numbness,tingling, or weakness in your hand and wrist. Carpal tunnel syndrome may affect one or both hands. Pain and muscle cramping will worsen over time, and the median nerve's function can lead to slower nerve impulses, numbness in the fingers, and loss of coordination.

The dangers of waiting too long to get surgery can lead to irreversible nerve damage and muscle atrophy, resulting in a permanent inability to properly use your hands and fingers. If your carpal tunnel symptoms haven't responded to non-surgical approaches like activity changes, steroid medications, injections, wrist exercises, and rest, it is time to consider surgery. Your doctor can discuss surgery options based upon the severity of your symptoms, like weakness, pain, and numbness.

There are two options for carpal tunnel release surgery. Carpal tunnel release is usually an outpatient procedure, which means that you can go home the same day as the surgery if all goes as expected. The traditional method is an open release, in which the surgeon cuts open the wrist to do the surgery. The other process is an endoscopic carpal tunnel release, in which a thin, flexible tube that contains a camera is slid into the wrist through a tiny incision. The surgery takes 10 minutes under a local anesthetic. Expect some pain, swelling, and stiffness after your procedure. Minor soreness in your palm may last for a few weeks to a few months. In the meantime, you may need to adjust job duties or even take time off from work while you heal.

If home treatments do not ease your pain in one or two weeks, it might be time to see an orthopedic physician specializing in the treatment of bones, joints, and muscles. If carpal tunnel is keeping you from doing what you love, ​book an appointment with Dr.Daneca DiPaolo for an in-depth evaluation and a personalized treatment recommendation.

Dr. Daneca DiPaolo is a highly-skilled, board-certified orthopedic surgeon and hand specialist located in Grenada, Mississippi. She offers the newest orthopedic techniques, and she provides quality, compassionate, state of the art orthopedic care. For all appointments and inquiries, please call (662) 227-7794.

  • American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons - AAOS
  • Mississippi State Medical Association
  • Ruth Jackson Orthopaedic Society
  • American Society for Surgery of the Hand