What is Carpal Tunnel Syndrome

by Ishani Bose last updated -

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Carpal tunnel syndrome is a group of conditions that arise due to a rise in pressure in the median nerve present in the hand. The carpal tunnel that surrounds the nerve has no space for expansion and thus, any swelling in the same area leads to pressure on the median nerve and results in an occurrence of the syndrome. It causes a numbing or tingling sensation in the ring, middle, index finger, and the thumb.

The carpal tunnel is a narrow passageway of ligament and bones at the base of your hand and it plays an important role in nerve conductions. Carpal tunnel protects the nerve. According to the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, this syndrome affects 23,000 individuals each year. It usually affects individuals who continuously use their hands, wrists, and arms for various reasons.



The many causes of this syndrome include the following:

• A buildup of pressure around the nerves due to stretching or repeated movements around the wrist
• Accumulation of fluid in the carpal tunnel due to kidney failure
• Repeated use of the tendons of the hand
Rheumatoid arthritis
Lyme disease
• Rubella


There are many symptoms of this syndrome. They include the following:

• Tingling, especially at night, causing a disturbance while sleeping
• Loss of grip and strength in the hands while holding or squeezing an object
• Weakness and numbness felt in the hands and wrists
• Wasting of thumb muscles
• Difficulty in performing manual tasks as there is a loss of coordination among the fingers and thumb
• A loss in the sensitivity of the hand
As the condition worsens, the pain may also shoot up to the arms and shoulders.

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About the Author

An alumnus of St Xavier’s College, Mumbai, Ishani is a journalist-turned-content writer, with an avid interest in politics, history, fashion, food, health, arts, and culture. She is a food fanatic, who loves to try out interesting and healthy recipes in her free time. When she isn’t writing or cooking, you’ll find her Instagramming (more often than she’d like), wasting time on an assortment of things such as shopping, netflixing, and chasing her up-to-no-good pet cat throughout the house.

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