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What is carpal tunnel syndrome?

| Oct 8, 2019 | Workers' Compensation |

You no doubt derive a great deal of both personal and professional satisfaction from your career in Kansas City. At the same time, your job can also take a lot out of you. No matter what type of work you do, its physical effects can be felt long after you are off the clock. If these include a tingling or numbness in your fingers, hands, wrists and/or arms, or you experience weakness in your upper extremities that makes performing seemingly simple tasks such as grasping and holding objects difficult, then you may be suffering from carpal tunnel syndrome. 

The carpal tunnel is a passageway on the palm side of your wrist. An important nerve known as the median nerve passes through this passageway and provides sensation to your fingers. According to the Mayo Clinic, irritation to this nerve can lead to the aforementioned symptoms. Sometimes this irritation comes from a wrist fracture or other traumatic injury to the extremities. Yet in many cases, carpal tunnel syndrome is caused by simple wear-and-tear over time. 

Work-related tasks that involved the use of your hands are often pinpointed as the cause of carpal tunnel syndrome. If your symptoms are the result of such work, then you may have cause to seek workers’ compensation benefits. However, the link between work functions and carpal tunnel syndrome is hotly debated. Little research currently exists that confirms typing, repetitive flexing of the wrists and fingers or the use of vibrating tools as causes of carpal tunnel syndrome. Thus, if you hope to secure workers’ compensation benefits for this condition, you will want a clinical diagnosis from your doctor that suggests your work functions as being the cause of it.  

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