Insurance Companies Insist On Alternative Treatments Before Carpal Tunnel Surgery

By: Tom Nicholson

Do you have a burning sensation in your wrists or forearms? Do you type all day long until your fingers feel week and dysfunctional? Are you a construction worker who hammers all day long and have pains in your elbow? If so, these symptoms could be the onset of carpal tunnel syndrome. For those who suffer from it, you understand the chronic pain and frustration that go along with the condition, and you'll do just about anything to get some relief even if that means surgery.
But surgery is extreme, and you really have to think whether it is worth it. The compression of the median nerve, which travels the length of the arm, is the main cause of carpal tunnel syndrome. There is a point in the wrist where the ligaments of your arm are bound together by the transverse carpal ligament. This point is where the median nerve becomes compressed. The repetitive motions of some jobs and hardening of soft tissues in the hands cause the compression.
Surgery can be considered as an option to relieve your symptoms, but it is something that should be thought about carefully. If your job is what has caused your carpal tunnel syndrome, that would mean that your livelihood depends on your hands being fully operational. Recovery from carpal tunnel surgery can take 6 weeks or more. On top of this, the surgery itself can cost $10,000 or more. Even if you have good insurance, you may have trouble with a bill that size.
The surgery is actually considered a "light surgery" and is about as un-invasive as they get. A twilight anesthetic is all that is needed in most cases. But no surgery should be taken lightly, especially when it is being performed on a complex area like the hand.
During the surgery, the surgeon severs the transverse carpal ligament, cutting it completely and immediately relieving the pressure on the median nerve. This can bring instant relief to the patient. However, you have to understand that you may not immediately be able to go back to work because the transverse carpal ligament still needs to heal-several weeks as was said before. Once it does, there should be a much better area of movement and less aggravation, however, there could be a chance that you might lose some strength in your hands as a result.
You might be interested to know that you don't have to go through all of that to relieve your carpal tunnel syndrome. If you contact a therapist or look on the web, you'll see there are several very simple exercises you can use to loosen the transverse carpal ligament so that the pressure on the median nerve is released. Also, consider having your hands massaged so the soft tissue there remains relaxed. And finally, try to maintain good posture and ergonomic technique when you do your job, so the pressure on your hands and wrists are greatly reduced.
Many people are surprised when they learn of these techniques to relieve carpal tunnel symptoms. So many act like surgery is the only option, and really surgery should not be gotten if it is at all avoidable. Trying less extreme methods before surgery is always a good idea. There have been people who have ended up with worse pain after surgery than they had before.

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Most medical professionals and insurance companies insist on carpal tunnel sufferers trying alternative methods of treatment in alleviating their symptoms before trying carpal tunnel surgery. This is because CTS surgery is known for being an ineffective treatment. Learn all you can about natural, non-invasive treatments before considering surgery.

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