Hopefully, by now you have seen one of our blogs on Laser Therapy or checked out our web page dedicated to benefits of Laser Therapy. One of the most published and talked about aspects of Laser Therapy is the ability to provide relief from the pain of Carpal Tunnel Syndrome.
“Carpal tunnel syndrome occurs when the median nerve, which runs from the forearm into the palm of the hand, becomes pressed or squeezed at the wrist. The median nerve controls sensations to the palm side of the thumb and fingers (although not the little finger), as well as impulses to some small muscles in the hand that allow the fingers and thumb to move. The carpal tunnel – a narrow, rigid passageway of ligament and bones at the base of the hand – houses the median nerve and tendons. Sometimes, thickening from irritated tendons or other swelling narrows the tunnel and causes the median nerve to be compressed. The result may be pain, weakness, or numbness in the hand and wrist, radiating up the arm. Although painful sensations may indicate other conditions, carpal tunnel syndrome is the most common and widely known of the entrapment neuropathies in which the body’s peripheral nerves are compressed or traumatized.” – NINDS (National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Strokes)
Carpal Tunnel Syndrome can be caused by genetics, trauma or even just your own bodies’ anatomy; some people’s carpal tunnels are just smaller than others. There is evidence that it can be caused by repetitive movements that are commonly used in the modern office setting. It is something that affects millions of people a year. For more information on Carpal Tunnel Syndrome, click here.
Laser Therapy’s ability to decrease pain and inflammation in a non-invasive way makes it a very viable option for those who are looking for relief from the pain cause by CTS. By stimulating the cells around the Carpal Tunnel, laser therapy immediately increases blood flow to the area while energizing the cells to optimize repair and regeneration. When the cells are energized and repairing, inflammation is reduced, typically allowing for less pressure on the nerve and pain relief. We have treated Carpal Tunnel symptoms here at the office and typically see positive results within 5-8 treatments.
One of the major studies to show that laser therapy was a viable treatment option was conducted by General Motors on over 100 of their factory workers. The study showed that functional measures of strength, grip and range of motion were significantly improved in the laser therapy group over the group that received physical therapy alone. It also found that the laser group had a had a higher “return to work” rate than the physical therapy group. Overall, the study showed that laser therapy can be used to enhance and quicken recovery from Carpal Tunnel Syndrome without surgery. More information about that study can be found here.
A broad analysis of studies on the subject can also be found here.
If you are experiencing pain or discomfort in your wrists or have questions about Laser Therapy treatment for Carpal Tunnel Syndrome, we can help. Call us today!