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New Treatment For Carpal Tunnel Syndrome Could Provide Lasting Relief Without Surgery

Carpal tunnel syndrome is a common condition that is caused when the median nerve, a branch of the nerves that supply most of the superficial and deep flexors in the forearm, thenar and lumbrical muscles, gets compressed when passing to the hand. The palm side of your hand is termed as the carpal tunnel [1].

Medical care provided for carpal tunnel syndrome depends on the severity of the symptoms and the pain levels. From yoga to surgery, the treatment options for carpal tunnel syndrome are plenty.

There are several treatments available for milder symptoms of CTS, including rest, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), and corticosteroid injections. If these treatments fail to relieve the symptoms, surgery may be necessary to relieve the pressure on the median nerve [2].

The results of a recent study indicate that hydrodissection, a procedure that involves injecting saline or other solutions around nerves to separate them from surrounding tissue, provides long-term relief from carpal tunnel syndrome [3].

Non-Surgical Treatment For Carpal Tunnel Syndrome

Here are the important points from the study:

Point 1: Researchers have discovered that hydrodissection, which involves injecting saline solution around a nerve to separate it from the surrounding tissue, can provide long-term relief from chronic tension syndrome.

Point 2: As part of this study, patients with carpal tunnel syndrome who had not responded to conservative treatment, including medications, splints, and lifestyle changes, were enrolled. On average, our study group had symptoms for approximately 1.5 years. Although most patients were advised to undergo surgery, many were unwilling to do so.

Point 3: In the study, the participants were divided into three groups randomly. Two groups underwent ultrasound-guided hydrodissection, and the third received a corticosteroid injection.

Point 4: The first group underwent hydro dissection with normal saline, the second group underwent hydro dissection with a saline plus corticosteroid, and the third group underwent guided perineural corticosteroid injection (local anaesthetic and steroid) [4].

Point 5: After the procedure, participants were able to return to work within one hour, without any anaesthesia or specialist equipment.

Point 6: The majority of previous studies with steroids have demonstrated satisfactory results at four weeks, and in some cases even for twelve weeks, though long-term follow-ups have not been conducted. As a result of the present study, approximately 85 per cent of patients showed significant improvement after 4 weeks [or corticosteroid injection alone], however, the effect waned with time.

Point 7: As a result, the researchers were surprised by the effectiveness of the simple procedure, stating that it is simple, low-cost, and does not require high-end interventional equipment.

Point 8: The greatest benefit of the new treatment for CTS is that it can be easily mastered and performed even in smaller centres. Furthermore, the minimal discomfort, the absence of hospitalization, and the ability to resume normal activities within an hour make it a very profitable procedure from the patient's perspective. There is no doubt that it could delay, or even completely eliminate, the need for surgery.

The procedure did not cause any adverse effects in the participants of the study.

Story first published: Friday, December 2, 2022, 22:03 [IST]
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