What to expect during carpal tunnel surgery

Carpal tunnel surgery is sometimes referred to as carpal tunnel release, and if you are considering this standard procedure, there are a few things you can research to help you through this process. Before you schedule surgery, you have to be diagnosed with the condition, and your doctor will probably recommend alternative approaches to alleviate symptoms first. Certain medications, physical therapy, and wrist splints can be effective at reducing symptoms without the need for surgery. If these interventions do not reduce the pain, then surgery may be necessary.

One such clinic for this syndrome to look out for is Hand Surgery Associates, who specialises in carpel tunnel surgery with over 40 years of combined experience. They have a wide range of services available, from emergency treatment to hand therapy. If you should need consultation for hand surgery, they are the place to look to. Find out more about them here.

There are risks associated with any surgery, and it should be used only as a last resort. If your conditions have existed for longer than six months, and the muscles in your hand are weakening to the point that they are noticeably smaller, then you can be confident that surgery is your best option. Doctors will use a local anesthesia to numb the wrist where the operation takes place, and in some cases, may use medication to put you to sleep for the procedure. Using anesthesia is risky for some people, and you should talk to your doctor to better understand the surgery before you agree.

Other potential risks of carpal tunnel syndrome include bleeding, infection, nerve injuries, blood vessel injuries, and a tender scar. Recovering from carpal tunnel syndrome takes a significant amount of time, and you will need help from physical therapists to regain full function in your hands. During this time, you will need to keep your wrists in a splint to prevent them from moving, and you may find daily activities harder than usual.

To best prepare for surgery, you should discuss with your doctor all the medications that you are currently taking, and you may be required to stop using some before surgery. Medications can combine to create deadly conditions, and you may be exposing yourself to a higher risk of uncontrollable bleeding and blood clots if you are not open and honest with the doctor. Smoking cigarettes can be detrimental to the recovery process, and you should consider quitting, at least while your body heals. Blood tests are recommended before surgery so the doctor is aware of any underlying conditions that may have been missed, and the doctor may ask you to avoid eating or drinking up to twelve hours before surgery.

During the surgery, the doctor will make a five-centimetre cut into your wrist to expose the ligaments. Next, surgical instruments are used to sever the carpal ligament and expand the carpal tunnel before stitching the wound back up. This method is known as open release and is the traditional method of performing this surgery.

Another way to perform the surgery is what is known as endoscopic carpal tunnel release, and uses a smaller cut of about one centimeter to insert a camera into the wrist. The camera allows the doctor to see the ligaments from one angle, and another small cut is made in the palm to allow a tiny knife to get near the ligament. In both surgeries, the carpal ligament is cut to reduce pressure on the median nerve.

After surgery, your wrist will be heavily bandaged and placed in a restrictive splint to prevent the wound from being disturbed. You will have a follow-up appointment to see the doctor in about one week’s time, and you should take the opportunity to ask any questions you may have. Pain is common for this type of surgery, and you will be prescribed medicine to help manage it. Talk to your doctor about any questions or concerns you may have before having surgery, and make sure to select a hand surgery clinic in Singapore that has extensive experience with these types of medical procedures.