Can a Chiropractor help with my Carpal Tunnel?
In over ten years in practice, the one thing I have discovered is that “carpal tunnel” syndrome has become overused as a medical buzz word, even by medical professionals, including Doctors.
Most wrist pain is NOT true carpal tunnel syndrome, which is defined as compression of the median nerve root.
(Here is a link to the Mayo Clinic describing the syndrome in more detail)
I cannot count the number of patients that have been incorrectly diagnosed by another practitioner with “carpal tunnel”, and even some that have undergone unsuccessful surgeries for carpal tunnel syndrome, that never had carpal tunnel in the first place!!
Especially patients that have had pain in bilateral wrists and hands!!
If you have symptoms (pain, numbness, tingling) in both wrists and/or hands, then it is highly unlikely to be carpal tunnel syndrome.
If you have symptoms above the wrist, such as in the arms and neck, then it is NOT true carpal tunnel!! You probably have myelopathy or radiculopathy, not carpal tunnel syndrome!!
Although Chiropractors CAN treat TRUE carpal tunnel syndrome, helping patients to avoid surgery, I find that it is much more common that the patient doesn’t really have carpal tunnel in the first place. They have radiculopathies and myelopathies.
This means that although the symptoms show in the wrists and hands, they also show in the arms on one or both sides. This means that the PROBLEM is not in the wrists, but is more likely at the root of the nerve, which lies in the patient’s neck.
This is why without xrays or MRIs of the patient’s neck, you will not see the true cause of the condition, and thus the patient will undergo treatment for the wrong area.
This is why I see so many patients that have been treated for carpal tunnel syndrome, even with surgery, but still have the symptoms.
They were misdiagnosed in the beginning and the treatment was given to the wrist, when it should’ve been given to the neck.
Chiropractors treat pinched nerves in the neck, that can sometimes cause symptoms radiating down one or both arms into the wrists and hands, causing pain, numbness, or tingling in those areas. This may be misdiagnosed as carpal tunnel syndrome.
That is why if you are having pain, numbness, or tingling in the hands or wrists, it is a good idea to consult a Chiropractor, who specializes in treating pinched nerves.
Have a great day,
Dr. Steve Lininger