Carpal tunnel syndrome is a common condition that can require surgery when other treatment options do not work. As you begin to explore options, you will need to find a carpal tunnel doctor who makes you feel comfortable. Having a comforting and competent doctor can help you through the process of surgery and recovery.
What You Need to Know About Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
The carpal tunnel is an opening that leads from the wrist into the hand. Within the carpal tunnel is the median nerve that gives sensation to the thumb, index finger, long finger and half of the ring finger. In addition, it has a nerve branch that controls certain muscles in the thumb that allow you to touch the thumb to the fingers of the hand.
Carpal tunnel syndrome is a common issue affecting the hands and wrists. Early symptoms begin as the median nerve becomes compressed. Conditions that cause the tissues around the nerve to swell or shrink the carpal tunnel can cause symptoms including numbness and pain.
There are various causes of carpal tunnel syndrome, including arthritis and other health conditions as well as the amount of pressure you put on the carpal tunnel when performing various tasks. This condition can also be caused by traumas such as injuries or severe disorders in addition to tumors or cysts that put pressure on the area.
It is commonly believed that jobs requiring repetitive motion, such as typing or assembly line work, cause carpal tunnel syndrome, but it actually affects a wide range of people with a diverse array of occupations. Contrary to the popular stigma of only office and factory workers getting carpal tunnel syndrome, many patients have no obvious connections to being at risk and are surprised when they find themselves in need of a carpal tunnel doctor. A specialized doctor can identify the symptoms of carpal tunnel and make sure that your symptoms aren’t caused by another condition or repetitive strain injury.
Qualities to Look for in a Carpal Tunnel Doctor
When it comes to choosing a doctor, you should look for qualities such as board certification and experience, along with whether or not you feel the doctor to be open and honest. The doctor’s staff and reviews are important as well.
Your carpal tunnel doctor should be board certified in a specialization such as hand surgery, orthopedic surgery, plastic surgery or neurosurgery. He or she should perform carpal tunnel surgery regularly and be familiar with new techniques.
Sometimes, carpal tunnel is mistaken for other conditions, such as strokes or multiple sclerosis, by patients themselves or by general practitioners less familiar with carpal tunnel syndrome. An expert will be able to identify whether you do have carpal tunnel or something else and help you seek treatment.
Although carpal tunnel syndrome can require surgery to alleviate symptoms, if the condition has not yet progressed, your carpal tunnel doctor will likely give you other ways to help, such as physical therapy, injections or other methods. Having a trustworthy carpal tunnel doctor ensures that you are receiving treatment for the condition that you have and that the treatment is the best course of action.
The doctor should also have a great staff that is easy to interact with and available. When you make your appointments, get a feeling for how the office interacts with each other and with patients to see if it is functional and conducive to working with your insurance, your schedule, etc.
Good Patient Reviews
Online review websites can also reveal whether other patients enjoyed the experience with both the doctor and the staff. Reading other people’s reviews and opinions can help you determine whether or not you feel comfortable with the doctor and staff and are able to ask any questions you have about carpal tunnel, the surgery, etc.
Asking questions regarding procedures, recovery, treatments, healing and even availability can help you better understand carpal tunnel as well as your available treatment options.
Feel Comfortable With Your Carpal Tunnel Doctor
As you search for your carpal tunnel doctor, it is important that you feel comfortable with your doctor so that you can ask questions, feel that your concerns are addressed and get responses. If you are anxious about asking questions, or neglect to ask them, then consider finding another doctor who you are comfortable with. Asking questions is an important part of your path to wellness and helps ensure that everything will go smoothly. Your doctor should understand your concerns and respond to any questions in a timely and professional manner.
Don’t proceed with a doctor you don’t feel comfortable with. This ensures that you receive the care you need and don’t undergo unnecessary procedures. Also, you are more likely to heal better if you are happy with your carpal tunnel doctor.