Can Carpal Tunnel Go Away Without Treatment?
If you’re like most people, you probably try to avoid surgery as much as possible unless it is absolutely necessary. Of course, surgery is unavoidable in certain cases and can be a highly beneficial or even life-saving step for many patients. When it comes to carpal tunnel syndrome, which affects hundreds of thousands of men and women each year, the decision on whether to undergo surgery can be difficult. Many patients wonder if their carpal tunnel can resolve on its own or with conservative, at-home remedies. Orthopedic expert Dr. Christopher Williams and the knowledgeable team at Interventional Orthopedics of Atlanta fully understand the desire to avoid surgery as a first step and are proud to offer a number of nonsurgical alternatives to help alleviate carpal tunnel symptoms when possible. Learn more about carpal tunnel treatment methods here, and find out when surgery may ultimately be your best option.
What is carpal tunnel syndrome?
Carpal tunnel is a frustrating and often painful condition that affects the wrists, hands, and fingers and is technically caused by heightened pressure on the median nerve, which runs through a channel called the carpal tunnel. When this channel narrows or becomes constricted, the median nerve is often pinched or damaged, resulting in a number of uncomfortable symptoms. Common carpal tunnel symptoms include numbness, tingling, or pain in the wrist, thumb, and first three fingers. These symptoms typically develop gradually over time and are often worse at night.
What causes carpal tunnel syndrome?
The narrowing of the carpal tunnel and resulting pressure placed on the median nerve may be due to one or more of the following conditions and/or behaviors:
- Trauma or injury
- Fluid retention
- Repetitive motion of the hands and wrists (cutting, sewing, typing, playing guitar, etc.)
- Inflammatory illness
Can carpal tunnel go away on its own?
Once carpal tunnel pain becomes apparent, it is unlikely to resolve on its own without taking any action. However, this does not necessarily mean surgery is the only option at Interventional Orthopedics of Atlanta. In early or mild cases of carpal tunnel syndrome, Dr. Williams often recommends conservative treatments first, including physical therapy, splints, stretching, and behavioral modification. While Dr. Williams fully understands the desire to avoid more invasive treatments, it is important for patients to understand that when left untreated, carpal tunnel syndrome can become worse and lead to permanent nerve damage and other complications. If carpal tunnel symptoms persist for more than two weeks despite rest, icing, NSAIDs, behavioral modification, and other conservative methods, Dr. Williams may recommend another treatment method, such as:
- Steroid injection
- Regenexx® cellular therapy
- Minimally Invasive Carpal Tunel Release
How can I prevent carpal tunnel syndrome?
Understanding your risk factors for carpal tunnel syndrome can help you reduce your chances of developing the condition, though it may be unavoidable in some cases. Atlanta, GA patients should be aware of their wrist and hand position throughout the day and attempt to keep the wrists as straight as possible. When typing, the use of a wrist pad is recommended to keep the hands and wrist parallel. It is important to avoid a position where the hands are elevated above the wrists, as this bending can increase the pressure on the carpal tunnel and ultimately affect the median nerve.
Get fast, reliable, long-lasting relief from carpal tunnel syndrome in Atlanta, GA
If you suspect that you may have carpal tunnel syndrome, it is important to seek professional diagnosis and treatment as soon as possible to avoid worsening symptoms and potentially permanent nerve damage. Don’t suffer from carpal tunnel pain that prevents you from doing the things you love any longer. Call the exceptional team at Interventional Orthopedics of Atlanta to schedule your private consultation with Dr. Christopher Williams today, and learn how you may be able to get relief from carpal tunnel syndromes without the need for surgery.