Anyone here have experience with carpal tunnel syndrome?

I have it in both of my hands. I had the carpal tunnel release surgery on my left hand ten years ago but it came back with a vengeance about two weeks ago and I’m frightened by its severity. I am a guitarist and have my whole lige situated around playing. Surgery takes months to heal and then they prescribe rehab with hand specialists after that. Saving my fretting hand is why I decided to have the left hand operated on and put off having the right hand done because it isn’t as severe. I don’t want to put aside my one and only diversion. I have made great strides in the last few years by really throwing myself full force into learning all the more esoteric ins and outs of guitar and play, play, playing. Suddenly age has crept up on me and I’m 60 (can’t believe I said that).

Anyone else struggle with this? It’s the nerve that follows your “life line” on the palm of your hand from the wrist through the “tunnel” made by touching your pinky to your thumb. If you bend your wrist and pick up something the wrong way, a “stinger” sizzles up that spot. Many people can no longer do their jobs if their jobs require hand work–like a mechanic for instance not even able to use a screwdriver. Please share if you know about it, have it, know of any relief remedies. I sleep with a splint on but take it off to make breakfast and get on with the day. Thanks.

Since the OP is asking about personal experiences, this is more appropriate for IMHO.

Colibri
General Questions Moderator

I had to quit interpreting because I developed it. I can still hang out with Deaf people and have signed conversations, but I can’t interpret, because that sometime has me standing by myself signing uninterrupted for a long period of time. Services aren’t supposed to do that to me-- when the job is longer than 1 hour, they are supposed to send two interpreters to switch about every 20 minutes to 1/2 hour. But I used to get it all the time anyway. I’ve done 8-hr. jobs by myself.

I wear braces at night hen it’s acting up, and about three years ago, I had injections of steroids in my wrists once a month for four months. I wore a brace on my left wrist, which was worse for some reason (I’m right-handed, and in interpreters, it’s usually the dominant hand that is worse), 24/7 while I was getting the injections, then I did a month of PT.

I occasionally get a little numbness in the fingers of my left hand, but my right hand is just fine. I probably need to go back to wearing my brace on my left wrist.

My manual dexterity doesn’t seem to be affected.

I have it, but I don’t have it as distressingly bad as either of you, and I seem to only have it in my right hand. I do wear a brace at night, but I haven’t gone to any other steps yet. So far the brace has seemed to work OK.

Certain activities will aggravate mine to the point of extreme pain but it always resolves itself usually in a few days but in some cases it took months.

I’ve got it in both wrists, but my dominant hand is a lot worse. Mine flares up when I’m stressed because I clench my fists and grab at my pillow at night. If I wear braces to sleep, it’s irritating, but usually effective.

When I worked food-service I was in the right-hand brace pretty much constantly, and would tear up from the pain when I had to pull a tray or scoop ice-cream. Now is not so bad, but I can tell when I’ve been typing too much or carrying too much weight all at once.

I’m told that the EMGs they did when I had ulnar nerve problems indicated a fairly mild flavor of carpal tunnel (as a consultant, I type away all day long). The ulnar nerve thing (after being “released” from the tunnel in the elbow) still acts up sometimes (for example, I only have partial feeling in my pinky and ring fingers on the affected hand). But that was caused by an old injury.

I find that with both carpal and ulnar issues, wrist/elbow padding and taking periodic breaks from finger-intensive activities (let’s keep this clean) helps. Also, if you’re a restless sleeper, trying to not do weird stuff with your arms (I’m a bit of a “sleep contortionist”).