What is Carpal Tunnel Release Surgery all about?
A carpal tunnel release (CTR) surgery is required when non-surgical methods of treating a carpal tunnel syndrome are not successful. This procedure provides relief from the constant numbness, muscle weakening and atrophied feeling in your wrist that is caused by the carpal tunnel syndrome.
Carpal tunnel syndrome is caused when undue pressure on the median (main) nerves causes the nerve to become partially or completely non-responsive. This causes the wrist and hand to feel numb, the wrist joint feels weak and there is a continuous tingling in your fingers.
What happens in a Carpal Tunnel Release Surgery?
Your wrist consists of carpal tunnel in which the median nerve and the tendons are located. These tendons are helpful in flexing your fingers. The carpal tunnel is a narrow space and any kind of inflammation in it applies undue pressure on the median nerves and the tendons and affects their functioning. The carpal ligament is the main ligament among these and is situated on the top part of your wrist.
The open (conventional) type of carpal tunnel release surgery is performed in the palm and close to the wrist. In this surgery, the doctor will make an incision on your wrist after administering local anesthesia to dull the pain. The doctor then makes a cut in the carpal ligament to release the pressure from the median nerves and tendons. At times the doctor might have to remove some of the tissues surrounding the median nerves as well. When the doctor is satisfied that the median nerves are free of the risk of any kind of pressure from the ligament or surrounding tissue he will apply stitches to close the incision.
Another method of performing a carpal tunnel release surgery is the endoscopic method. This minimally invasive method of surgery requires the surgeon to make comparatively smaller incisions in the heel of the palm and inserts a tiny camera attached to the small endoscopic tube which gives the surgeon a better view of the condition. The surgeon uses other microscopical surgical instruments attached to the endoscope to make the necessary cuts in the carpal ligaments and surrounding tissue to relieve the pressure on the median nerves and tendons. It takes a little longer for the carpal tunnel release surgery to be performed in this minimally invasive method but it has certain advantages over the open type surgical method, such as less bleeding, smaller incisions heal faster, etc.
Are there any risks or complications in Carpal Tunnel Release Surgery?
As with any type of surgery there are small chances of certain risks or complications that may arise, these are:
- Bleeding – The doctor will provide coagulating medicines to stop excess bleeding.
- Allergy – The doctor will check your complete medical history to avoid administering any medicine or drug that you might be allergic to.
- Infection – In case of an infection and to reduce the risk of infection the doctor will prescribe sufficient antibiotics to you after the surgery.
- Injury to Median Nerve – These injuries are caused when there is extensive damage to the median nerves from prolonged pressure or any other injury.
The doctor will take all necessary precautions and safety measure to ensure that your surgical procedure is safe and successful.[free_quotes_and_consultation]