Carpal tunnel surgery.....only option?

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aux433
Regular Member


Date Joined Oct 2008
Total Posts : 24
   Posted 4/28/2009 3:42 AM (GMT -7)   
Hi All,
For months I have had numbness in my hands and arms. It started after multiple falls due to my "fibro" dance......always off balance.
 
After PT and multiple physician visits, my doctor ordered an electrical study (EMG). The test showed I have no nerve conduction to either hand.
 
They call it traumatic carpal tunnel syndrome and tell me surgery is the only option. The surgeon also said I should have surgery on both  hands at the same time in order to minimize down time.
 
Does anyone know if there is any other option???
 
Does anyone have advise for me following surgery????
 
Would appreciate any suggestions,
 
As always,  thanks to you all
 
 

pattipanda
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jan 2009
Total Posts : 1014
   Posted 4/28/2009 4:29 AM (GMT -7)   

Hey Aux!!

I have carpal tunnel in both hands and in my feet... 25 years of over use as a hairdresser was what created my situation. 

Apparently my form of carpal tunnel and yours are different. 

I don't really know what to tell you except I'm sorry you have to deal with this.  Not having use of both hands for a little while would be awful.  I hope you have someone around to help you when you need it.  It does seem a bit extreme but now-a-days ortho surgery is amazing and they often want you to use the area that's been operated on as quickly as possible.

Good luck and let us know how everything turns out.

Take care,


Patti
 
Fibormyalgia, 4x Lyme Disease Survivor, Depression, Anxiety Disorder, Dyslexia, 2 Lumbar Disk Herniations, Allergies, Bi-lateral Carpal Tunnel, Psoriasis. 
Meds = Elavil, Tramadol, Xanax, Lipitor
"Shoot for the moon, even if you miss, you'll land among the stars" - author unknown


SleepyBug
Veteran Member


Date Joined Nov 2008
Total Posts : 1097
   Posted 4/28/2009 5:38 AM (GMT -7)   
Hi,

I have carpal tunnel, too, in both of my wrists/hands. My symptoms come and go-sometimes I have very little trouble with it, sometimes it hurts terribly. My Dr. never mentioned surgery for it, so I'm guessing you must have a more severe case.

My husband's grandma had terrible CTS and ended up having the surgery. I know she had to take it easy for awhile after, but it really helped her a lot, so hopefully it will help you, too.

I wish I had more info for you on this one, but I did want to let you know I'm thinking of you. Please let us know how things go for you.
love and hugs
~danielle


fibromyalgia, ibs, gerd, anxiety

We either make ourselves happy or miserable. The amount of work is the same.~Carlos Castaneda

I wish you all the joy that you can wish.~William Shakespeare

Housework, if you do it right, will kill you.~Erma Bombeck


Sherrine
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Apr 2005
Total Posts : 17101
   Posted 4/28/2009 8:13 AM (GMT -7)   
I've had carpal tunnel on and off for many years.  It did get so bad that I could barely hold a pen in my hand to write checks.  It was worse in my right hand so I started practicing how to write with my left hand.  I lost strength in my hands and needed help opening jars, lifting mildly heavy things, etc.I did baby my hands and tried to keep them in a more correct position.  I also take ibuprofen to help control the pain of fibro so it helped a little with the carpal tunnel, too.  I lost weight in the process, too, and now my hands are fine again.  Rarely do I have numbness in my fingers.  If I do, I just put my hands down to my sides, sometimes shake them, and the feeling comes back.  But this happens rarely for me now.  
 
I found this really informative site about carpal tunnel and what they do for treatments.  It even describes the surgery, too.  This might help  you some...at least I hope so.  Let us know what you end up doing.
 
 
 
Sherrine 
Forum Moderator/ Fibromyalgia
***********************
Fibromyalgia, Crohn's Disease, Ostomy, Diabetes, Autoimmune Inner Ear Disease, Osteoporosis
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
God does not give us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.    2 Timothy 1:7


solar powered
Veteran Member


Date Joined Nov 2007
Total Posts : 538
   Posted 4/28/2009 8:54 AM (GMT -7)   
Hi and welcome to a group. I don't have carpal tunnel problems myself. I do have other orthopedic type issues and have been seeing a chiropractor who uses the manual techniques called Active Release Technique and Graston Technique. I think they are just awesome and have been very helpful to me. They use these methods for a variety of problems and carpal tunnel is one of them. If you go to www.activerelease.com and www.grastontechnique.com they have a list of certified providers, many of which are chiros but not all. Maybe there is one near you. I know alot of people here are kind of anti-chiropractor for various reasons but please consider at least checking it out. It was my orthopedic surgeon in fact who sent me to this chiro because he believed he could help me and he was right. They may not be able to help you but it is at least worth calling about it. I hope you can find a way to have no pain in your hands without going the surgery route. Lisa
 
Oh something else I wanted to mention about these methods is that they are not a quick fix. They take time. If you don't want to spend the time then surgery may be the best option. Good luck.


Life is the ultimate contact sport. Train accordingly and play hard.

Post Edited (geckogirl) : 4/28/2009 9:57:10 AM (GMT-6)


Jeannie143
Veteran Member


Date Joined Apr 2004
Total Posts : 6056
   Posted 4/28/2009 9:22 AM (GMT -7)   
Carpal tunnel syndrome is caused by the overuse of the wrist and hands and the tendon that goes thru the hole in the middle of the wrist bone enlarges, cutting off the circulation to the nerves that use the same bone tunnel. In minor cases immobilization of the wrist and anti-inflammatory meds can often decrease the size of the tendon inflammation leading to temporary relief. If you have as extreme a case as noted you may find that surgery offers the only relief.

The pros and cons of having both done at the same time vary. Doctors find that patients often don't want the second surgery if they have one done at a time. Surgery is a traumatic experience for some people and they don't want to face a second round of it. On the other hand, having both surgeries at the same time saves on recovery, PT, medical costs and is actually easier on your body with only one anesthesia session. But remember, right after surgery you will not be able to use your hands as easily and you will need someone at home to help with some of your activities of daily living. If it were me, I'd go for it! Quicker recovery and it will be done and over with. Just my 2ยข.
~ Jeannie, Forum Moderator/Diabetes & Fibromyalgia
I know God will not give me anything I can't handle. I just wish that He didn't trust me so much. ~Mother Teresa

"People are like stained glass windows: They sparkle and shine when the sun's out, but when the darkness sets in, their true beauty is revealed only if there is light within."- Elizabeth Kubler-Ross


lost in philly
Regular Member


Date Joined Jan 2009
Total Posts : 243
   Posted 4/28/2009 2:58 PM (GMT -7)   
I had CTS and had the dual surgery on both hands back in 1992. And I can say that I have no regrets about that decision, it was the right one for me! I recovered nicely and went on to being a house painter for 14 years, so I obviously did not lose any strength or feeling. My CTS was very painful and severe with shooting pain into up my arms into my neck and my hands were turning into claws from the pain/ numbness.
I agree alot with what Jeannie and everyone above said and would just add that...for me, there was nothing, no pain meds or therapy that would take the pain or numbness away until I woke up after surgery and poof it was gone. The only thing I would do differently is to insist that I not be put under. Anasthesia wrecks such havoc on your body (at least on mine!) it would take a week for me to feel better from that alone! For a day surgery you can ask for sedation only.
Also, I would think long and hard before I would do both at the same time again. (Imagine your mother-in-law putting your bra on for you!) If you dont work and dont have to rush back to work...I would spread them out 2-3+ months. Your hand will be in a soft cast afterwards, so you will have the use of your fingertips...so pulling up underware and elastic waist pants will be the most you can do.
And of course, do all the PT they suggest after..otherwise it could come back.
Good luck!
lost in philly

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Fibromyalgia, Endometriosis, Migraines, Asthma, Chronic Fatigue

Topamax, Morphine, Effexor, Abilify, Crestor, Resoril, Loestrin, Imitrex

B12, Magnesium, Melatonin, Omega3
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

"Knowing without doing is like plowing without sowing."


aux433
Regular Member


Date Joined Oct 2008
Total Posts : 24
   Posted 5/1/2009 4:35 AM (GMT -7)   
Thank you Everyone!!!
There is no other resource that offers such info and support. i am grateful for everyones support.

Went to the doctor's office yesterday for a second opinion. He said that because my carpal tunnel syndrome was caused by trauma and studies show I no longer have nerve conduction in my hands, there really is no good option other than surgery. So I am especially grateful to hear from everyone who has had positive results from surgery.

So...I'm scheduled for surgery on both hands Tuesday! My goal is to maintain a positive attitude and do everything possible to regain the use of my hands.

Please think of me Tuesday and thank you to everyone!!!

Sherrine
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Apr 2005
Total Posts : 17101
   Posted 5/1/2009 9:59 AM (GMT -7)   
Thanks for letting us know.  I know you are doing the right thing and the surgery doesn't sound that bad...according to the link I posted.  You will be in my thoughts and prayers Tuesday!
 
Sherrine
Forum Moderator/ Fibromyalgia
***********************
Fibromyalgia, Crohn's Disease, Ostomy, Diabetes, Autoimmune Inner Ear Disease, Osteoporosis
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
God does not give us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.    2 Timothy 1:7

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