Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) believes that the energy within our body can heal. When this energy becomes stagnant, it can lead to problems. Acupuncture allows this energy to move within the body, therefore creating healing components where it is needed. TCM does not simply treat Carpal Tunnel Syndrome; they treat your body as a whole.
There are three types of treatment options for treating Carpal Tunnel Syndrome. These include physical therapy, medications, and surgical intervention.
Eight small bones make up the wrist. These bones are called carpal bones. Surrounding these bones is a tunnel that connects the hand to the wrist. There are also ligaments and nerves in the tunnel that allow the hand and wrist to function. When this tunnel becomes constricted, it causes compression on these ligaments and nerves. When compressed, you will experience pain, tingling, and weakness in the area.
Medications and surgeries are tough on the human body. Acupuncture is a conservative treatment that gives you relief without causing further damage. Look for an experienced licensed provider with the education needed to help you in the healing process.
There are experienced providers at the EBOM Clinic to help you develop a plan to treat your Carpal Tunnel Syndrome.
During an acupuncture session, thin needles are placed in designated pressure points. The insertion of these needles allows the energy to move freely through your body. When the Qi is flowing correctly, you will begin to feel relief from the pain. This approach may also prevent you from taking medications that could damage other supporting organs within your body.
Repetitive motions like typing, driving, or playing an instrument create stress on your hands and wrist. These motions can damage muscles, tendons, and nerves required to use these extremities fully. It can become painful and difficult to complete everyday tasks. Closing your hand to pick up a glass of water or an eating utensil could be complicated by weakness and pain. These symptoms often lead to a diagnosis of Carpal Tunnel Syndrome.
There has been an increase in studies on acupuncture and its role in the conservative treatment approach for patients. This increase is likely due to physicians’ and insurance carriers' acceptance of acupuncture as a treatment modality. Regarding specifically Carpal Tunnel Syndrome, here are a few studies that show the efficacy of acupuncture.
Acupuncture for mild to moderate symptoms -–A group of 64 patients was broken into two groups. One group, the control group, was administered “fake” acupuncture treatments. The second group was the intervention group, and they were given actual acupuncture treatments. Both groups had a series of 8 sessions over four weeks and were supported with nightly splints and vitamins. After four weeks, the intervention group showed significant improvements over the control group. Nerve Conduction Velocity tests measured these results.
Acupuncture versus Steroid Injection - A long-term study was conducted to review the effectiveness of steroids versus acupuncture on those with a Carpal Tunnel Syndrome Diagnosis. A total of 77 people were randomized into two treatment groups. One received four weeks of prednisone treatment, and the second received four weeks of acupuncture treatments. Compared to the steroid group, the acupuncture group had significantly better outcomes after one year.
Short-term impact of acupuncture versus steroids - Patients participating in this survey was randomly placed into two groups. One group was treated with Prednisone for a total of four weeks. The other group was given acupuncture treatments. After the initial month, both treatments proved to improve symptoms. This proves that acupuncture can be used as an alternative to medications.
The median nerve runs through the carpal tunnel. This nerve provides feeling and function to the thumb, index, middle, and ring fingers. Damage to the carpal tunnel via injury or repetitive motion causes this nerve to become pinched by the carpal ligament. People with Carpal Tunnel Syndrome often begin to see minor symptoms, including a tingling sensation or slight pain when moving the thumb or wrist. Over time and with continued movement, these symptoms may progressively worsen. The numbness and tingling may be constant. Some people may experience weakness, causing them to drop objects.
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