Cubital Tunnel Syndrome (CTS) is a medical condition that occurs in both men and women when they become subject to excessive stretching, flexing, or pressure on the elbow. While the condition isn’t deadly, it can be caused by seemingly innocuous day-to-day activities and lead to numbness, pain, or discomfort in the fingers, hands, wrist, forearm, and elbow. Specialists in hand pain treatment, we at North Florida Hand and Wrist Center can provide you with the right kind of care. However, you can also manage your symptoms from home using these helpful tips.
1. Perform ice therapy
Ice therapy isn’t as daunting as it sounds. Simply placing an ice pack on the inflamed area can help decrease the pain and swelling you feel. It may also prevent any tissue damage. If you don’t have an ice pack, you can crush ice into a plastic bag and place it on the target area for 15 to 20 minutes at a time.
2. Rest your arm
As soon as you feel any pain, you’re going to want to rest your injured arm to ensure a speedy recovery.
3. Seek physical therapy
If home remedies don’t seem to be working, it might be time to seek physical therapy. A therapist can help assess the injury and recommend the proper exercises to improve motor functioning, flexibility, and general strength. They can also help relieve recurring pain or discomfort.
4. Use a splint or brace
If you can’t perform hand therapy on your own or with a therapist, consider fitting a medical brace to protect the elbow and prevent excessive movement that can exacerbate the injury. The restricted movement can lessen the pressure on your ulnar nerve and speed up recovery.
Treating CTS Professionally
In the best case, CTS tends to ease up over time, especially when applying the techniques listed above. However, medication or surgical intervention may be necessary in more severe cases. The following treatments are used to ease symptoms.
1. Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs
Known more commonly as NSAIDs, these medications decrease the amount of swelling and pain in the body. They’re often available over the counter and without a prescription, but it’s best to consult with your healthcare provider about what products can treat your condition best and how much of them you’ll need. If not taken properly, NSAIDs can cause unwanted side effects such as stomach bleeding or kidney problems.
2. Corticosteroid injections
Though they may cause temporary discomfort to the swollen area, corticosteroid injections are proven to reduce inflammation in and around the joints. These can reduce pain and increase circulation in the affected area.
3. Surgical intervention
If necessary, surgical intervention can be recommended, especially if you suffer from CTS regularly. Surgery directly treats the ulnar nerve. Sometimes, a healthcare provider will move the nerve to a different area if it is too stretched or compressed and can prevent the symptoms from returning. Other times, surgeons may even remove part of your bone that might be adding pressure to the ulnar nerve.
Experiencing symptoms of CTS? Contact us now – we provide comprehensive treatments for Cubital Tunnel Syndrome and other hand & wrist problems in Jacksonville!