Carpal Tunnel

 

My best friend recently had a baby.  Such an exciting time for both of us, as we dreamed what our lives would be when we grew up.  Would we have one child, where would we work, and what kind of job would we be working?  She really enjoyed being pregnant, and carried very well.  Her husband even joked that she looked even more toned in the last trimester in her arms and legs.  Only one major issue was her hands were in terrible pain.  They were swollen and the pain kept her awake throughout the night.  Her doctor diagnosed her with carpal tunnel from the pregnancy.  Carpal tunnel occurs from a build up of fluid through the carpal tunnel.  The carpal tunnel is an area on the palmar side of your wrist just above your hand where many tendons run through.  The median nerve passes through these tendons to innervate the hand.  When there is an increase of fluid to that area, an impingement of the nerve may occur which can be very painful and create tingling in the fingers of the hand (mainly affecting the thumb, pointer finger and middle finger). 

My friend was so worried she would not be able to hold her beautiful baby upon delivery.  She feared the pain would limit her from closing the baby bottles, buttons on her sons clothes, and snapping a bib on.  I travelled out to Matawan, NJ to be there for her.  To help massage her hand, educate her on stretches and exercises that would help limit the pain.  She finally got a good nights sleep and when her beautiful baby was born she held him happily in her arms.  Carpal tunnel may occur without pregnancy as the cause.  Physical therapy can be very helpful for recovery of function and to decrease pain.