Your has recommended that you undergohand surgery to treat carpal tunnel syndrome. But what exactly is carpal tunnel syndrome? The median nerve, which carries sensationto the thumb and first three fingers, passes through a natural passageway in the wrist.This opening called the carpal tunnel is formed by archshaped wrist bones and a connectingligament. Various conditions, such as pregnancy, injury,arthritis and changes in the tendons caused by repetitive motion can crowd the alreadynarrow tunnel, putting pressure on the nerve. This added pressure can cause a tingling sensationin the fingers and the thumb and may even
lead to numbness, pain and restricted movement.This combination of symptoms is called the carpal tunnel syndrome. Your Procedure: On the day of your operation, you will beasked to put on a surgical gown. You may receive a sedative by mouth and an intravenous line may be put in. You will then be transferred to the operatingtable. Your will scrub thoroughly and willapply an antiseptic solution to the skin around
the area where the incision will be made. Next, the surgeon will numb the involved areaof the hand and wrist with an anesthetic, either with a local injection or by completelyblocking a nerve higher up on the arm. When the operative field is completely numbthe surgeon will make an incision. Skin and other tissue will be carefully drawnaside to expose the carpal ligament. Then the surgeon will cut the ligament, relieving pressure on the nerve that runsbeneath it. Finally the will close the incisionwith fine sutures.
A sterile bandage will be applied and a splintwill be put in place to prevent the wrist from moving while healing takes place..
Driving with Severe Arthritis
Severe arthitis, which makes your joints swollenand stiff, is a very common problem for older adults. Arthritis can make it hard for youto get into and out of your car. Arthritis in your hands, shoulders, or back can makeit harder to put on your seat belt. It can also make it difficult to hold and turn thesteering wheel. Arthritis in your neck can make driving risky. You may have difficultymaneuvering in traffic because you cannot turn your head to effectively check your blind spots. A driving rehabilitation specialist can evaluate your driving and may be ableto recommend adaptations to your vehicle that
will make it easier and safer to drive. If you take medications to help with the pain of arthritis, be aware that they could make you drowsy and could prevent you from driving safely. Work with your health care providerto manage your arthritis so you can stay active and safe..