What is included in patient education about carpal tunnel syndrome (CTS)?

Updated: Mar 30, 2020
  • Author: Nigel L Ashworth, MBChB, MSc, FRCPC; Chief Editor: Milton J Klein, DO, MBA  more...
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Answer

See the list below:

  • Association versus cause - The association of 2 phenomena does not imply a causal relationship. Using the hands frequently brings on symptoms of carpal tunnel syndrome (CTS), in the same way that exercise brings on angina in patients with coronary artery disease. This association, however, does not necessarily mean that the median nerve damage is caused by use or that it will get worse. (Exercise, in fact, is good for coronary artery disease.)

  • Avoidance of extremes - If a patient's vocation/avocation involves extreme force/repetition/posture/vibration through the wrist, then it seems prudent to seek ways of avoiding factors that cause or aggravate CTS.

  • Exercise - BMI and poor fitness levels do appear to be related to the development of CTS.

For patient education resources, see Carpal Tunnel Net, or the Hand, Wrist, Elbow, and Shoulder Center and Arthritis Center, as well as Carpal Tunnel Syndrome.


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