If your job requires you to perform the same hand and wrist motions repetitively, you may be at risk for developing carpal tunnel syndrome. The repeated stress can cause tissues in the wrist to swell. This squeezes the median nerve, causing symptoms of numbness, tingling and pain in the first three fingers of the hand.
According to the Mayo Clinic, your risk of carpal tunnel syndrome is greater with certain jobs. Examples include working on an assembly line or operating vibrating tools. Possible treatments include surgical and non-surgical treatment options.
Surgical treatment options
Surgery is usually not the first-line treatment for carpal tunnel syndrome. Your doctor typically only recommends surgery if your symptoms persist following a course of conservative treatment.
According to the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons, the two surgical options for treating carpal tunnel syndrome are an open carpal tunnel release and an endoscopic release. Both involve increasing the space within the carpal tunnel by dividing the transverse carpal ligament. This relieves pressure on your median nerve. An endoscopic procedure is less invasive, reducing recovery time and infection risk.
Non-surgical treatment options
Before your doctor recommends surgery, he or she will probably try a course of conservative, non-surgical treatments first. These may include steroid injections or over-the-counter anti-inflammatory medications to reduce the swelling. Other options include bracing to relieve pressure on the nerve or exercises that help it to move more freely. Modifying activities that contribute to your symptoms may help to slow the progression, potentially stopping it altogether.
You do not have to have surgery to claim compensation for expenses related to carpal tunnel syndrome treatment. As long as your condition arises from your work, you can claim compensation for whatever non-surgical treatments you receive.