CARPAL TUNNEL RELEASE
DO I NEED CARPAL TUNNEL RELEASE?
Carpal tunnel release is very effective in relieving the pain, numbness and tingling in your hand and fingers. If you tried splinting and a steroid injection but your symptoms returned surgical release is the next step.
WHAT IS INVOLVED?
Preparing for your operation
You will have a pre-assessment to identify any correctable abnormalities. We advise that you stop smoking if applicable.
- This operation is done as day case surgery under local anaesthetic. A 4 cm long incision is made over the carpal tunnel at the base of the palm and the the nerve is released. The wound is closed using dissolvable sutures.
You should be able to go home soon after your operation and need to elevate your hand to prevent bleeding and help with pain relief. The bulky dressing can be removed after 24 hours and a small sticky dressing used to cover the wound. It takes 10-12 days for the would to heal. During this time you should not put your hand under water. Once the wound has healed you can resume your normal activities, although you need to be careful with heavy lifting and grasping things firmly for a few more weeks. Learn more.
WHAT ARE THE BENEFITS?
Your pain, numbness and tingling should gradually ease.
You can return to light duties within a few days, but activities involving heavy lifting and grasping firmly should be avoided for 3-4 weeks.
WHAT ARE THE RISKS?
Infection is rare and may only need a course of antibiotics. In severe cases a second operation is necessary to clear it.
Significant bleeding or nerve injury is uncommon.
Residual symptoms. You may experience some pain, numbness and tingling for a few months. Very rarely a re-do operation may become necessary. If you had muscle wasting this is unlikely to improve.