Posted By CCF NSG MD /gsh on November 30, 1998 at 23:23:28:
In Reply to: Numb Fingers posted by Maureen Halloran on November 30, 1998 at 22:33:15:
Hello I was wondering if you could answer a question for me. I am 30 years old and I am a teacher. I have been having some problems with my right hand. At night my hand goes numb and often my ring finger and middle finger hurt. The pain wakes me up. There are also times during the day that my hand and fingers go numb. I was told it was possibly carple tunnel ....Do these symptoms sound familar? Thank you for your time and help.
One of the earliest signs of carpal tunnel syndrome is numbness and pain in the hand at night. The distribution is distinctively in the thumb, index and middle fingers of the hand.
Carpal tunnel syndrome results from compression of the median nerve at the wrist. It can present, as noted above, with nighttime findings which may progress to daytime pain, numbness and weakness of the thumb. Carpal tunnel syndrome is often seen in patients who do repetitive tasks such as typing, writing or knitting, for example.
Try making a fist and then flexing your wrist to make a 90 degree angle with respect to the forearm. Hold it there for a minute or so. If this maneuver reproduces the pain, you likely have carpal tunnel. This is known as Phalen's test.
Initial therapy for carpal tunnel syndrome is conservative with a wrist splint and avoidance of things that would aggravate matters. Surgery for decompression of the nerve is indicated only after a period of conservative therapy has failed to improve the symptoms.
Speak to a physician about the diagnosis of carpal tunnel in you situation for an opinion. Also, one should be wise to the possibility of a herniated cervical disc in this situation as well.
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