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What is carpal tunnel syndrome?

Carpal tunnel syndrome is a condition where there is increased pressure on a nerve that crosses the front of your wrist (the median nerve).

The median nerve runs through a tight tunnel on the front of your wrist, together with the tendons that bend your fingers.

Figure showing carpal tunnel nerves

If the tunnel becomes too tight it can cause pressure on the nerve, usually resulting in pain or numbness in the thumb, index and middle fingers.

What are the benefits of surgery?

You should get relief from pain and numbness in your hand.

Are there any alternatives to surgery?

If your symptoms are mild, a wrist support worn at night often helps.

A steroid injection near the carpal tunnel can reduce the numbness or pain in most people but the symptoms usually come back after several weeks or months.

What does the operation involve?

The operation can usually be performed under a local anaesthetic and usually takes about 20 minutes.

Your surgeon will make a small cut on the palm of your hand. They will cut the tight ligament (the flexor retinaculum) that forms the roof of the carpal tunnel. This stops the nerve being compressed.

What complications can happen?

General complications of any operation

  • Pain
  • Bleeding
  • Scarring of your skin
  • Infection of the surgical site (wound)

Specific complications of this operation

  • Numbness in your thumb, index and middle fingers
  • Tenderness of the scar
  • Aching in your wrist
  • Return of numbness and pain
  • Severe pain, stiffness and loss of use of your hand

How soon will I recover?

You should be able to go home the same day.

Keep your hand raised and bandaged for 2 days. It is important to gently exercise your fingers, elbow and shoulder to prevent stiffness.

Regular exercise should help you to return to normal activities as soon as possible. Before you start exercising, ask the healthcare team or your GP for advice.

Your symptoms may continue to improve for up to 6 months.

Why choose The London Clinic?

The London Clinic is dedicated to providing the best, personalised healthcare with over 600 world- renowned consultants available to offer informed health advice and treatment.

Spanning Harley Street and Devonshire Place, The London Clinic is situated in the heart of London’s internationally-known medical district. This central location, together with state-of-the art technologies and facilities that are not widely available in other hospitals, makes The London Clinic the hospital of choice for around 120,000 patients every year.

The London Clinic is an HTA licensed and JACIE accredited cancer centre with an ‘Excellent’ MacMillan Quality Environment Mark and with access to a Level 3 intensive care unit.

Offering affordable and competitive self-pay packages and expert support from Clinical Nurse Specialists and our specialised multidisciplinary team, over 98% of our patients said they would recommend The London Clinic to their friends and families.

TREATMENT COST

The London Clinic offers affordable, competitive self-pay packages for certain treatments. An all-inclusive package for this treatment is available from £1,240. Please call +44 (0)20 3219 3315 to speak to our helpful team to find out more and to book an appointment.

Summary

Carpal tunnel syndrome causes numbness in your thumb, index and middle fingers. A carpal tunnel release should improve your symptoms and prevent permanent nerve damage.  

We offer an All-inclusive package for this treatment at £1,730.

Find out more about paying for your own treatment

Disclaimer

The operation and treatment information on this website is published under license by The London Clinic from EIDO Healthcare UK and is protected by copyright laws. Other than for your personal, non-commercial use, you may not copy, print out, download or otherwise reproduce any of the information. The information should not replace advice that your relevant health professional would give you.

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