Carpal Tunnel Syndrome Test
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Carpal tunnel syndrome test results
After you get your evaluation, you may want to confirm the results at your doctor’s office. Here’s what you can expect if you decide to go.
Your doctor will perform some simple tests, all of which you can do at home. We’ll send you a beautifully illustrated PDF with your evaluation results so you CAN do them at home easily.
The tests include the Tinel, Durkan, and Phalen tests. Essentially, these carpal tunnel syndrome tests make you mimic the symptoms by bending or tapping your wrist and hand. If they can reproduce the symptoms, then you have confirmed carpal tunnel syndrome.
If you go to your doctor, he or she may encourage you to have carpal tunnel surgery. But even the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons recommends non-surgical options first. That’s because about 50% of patients are dissatisfied with their results after two years. Most of the unhappy patients see a return of their symptoms, and in a few – they actually get worse.
And it’s not just carpal tunnel surgery recovery time to take into consideration. After the surgery, rehabilitation takes up to 6 months and there’s the cost and inconvenience of traveling to a physical therapist.
Treatments after the carpal tunnel syndrome test
Non-surgical, conservative treatment begins with avoidance, rest and stretching. You should avoid (or modify) the problem causing the stresses on your hands. For example, buy a carpal tunnel mouse for the workstation. You can also buy a carpal tunnel keyboard that minimizes finger movements.
Rest following the carpal tunnel syndrome test:
Rest is the best way to heal any problem with the body. Carpal tunnel is no different. Rest your hands and fingers as often as you can. Take frequent breaks from typing or whatever hand activities you do repetitively.
Do stretches and use a splint:
During these rest periods, stretch your fingers by locking and bending them backward. Then let your hands dangle at your side while you shake them out. This encourages blood flow. Perform resting and stretching about 10 seconds for every 10 minutes of work. This is a small time investment for healthy hands. At night, wear a wrist splint to keep your hand in the “neutral position”. This stops the wrist from over-bending and causing stresses inside the wrist joint.
Myofascial release following the carpal tunnel syndrome test:
Sometimes these interventions are not enough to relieve symptoms. That’s when myofascial release massage becomes the non-surgical treatment accepted by therapists. It’s particularly recommended for more advanced symptoms. Therapists use this technique on the wrist and forearm to create a kneading motion, which breaks adhesions and drains fluid from inside the wrist joint. This relieves pressure on the median nerve and symptoms gradually melt away. However, this therapy takes the dedication of daily application for about four weeks with a therapist – a plan few people can afford.
Carpal tunnel and your computer
Carpal tunnel syndrome is not a condition you get from the mouse or keyboard. Some people say they have “carpal tunnel mouse” or “carpal tunnel keyboard” from over-using their workstation implements. They might also complain they developed a “carpal tunnel thumb” as a result.
It’s not caused by a keyboard or mouse. Rather, overusing these items or using them improperly caused the carpal tunnel to appear. The same goes for over-using your hands in the garden, fishing, hairdressing, sewing, golfing. Wherever you do repetitive and forceful movements with your hand and fingers, increases the risk.
You might have symptoms like hand or finger pain, numbness, tingling, pins-and-needles, puffiness, soreness or burning. Maybe you’re waking up at night with the need to shake out your hands to relieve the numbness. Maybe you’re losing grip and pinch strength or find it difficult to pick up small objects (like a coin or keys). That means the condition is more advanced. It is especially more advanced if you’ve lost sensations of hot and cold in your fingers.