These exercises have been developed and tested by Dr. Housang Seradge at the University of Oklahoma Orthopaedic & Reconstructive Research Foundation (http://ortho-ok.com/orrf/ORRF_CARPAL_TUNNEL_PREVENTION.htm).
Studies indicate that two out of three patients with mild to moderate carpal tunnel symptoms were able to avoid surgery by using these exercises – twice the success rate of other nonsurgical treatments. These exercises are more successful in patients with mild symptoms, and are not recommended for patients with severe symptoms. Patients who have persistent symptoms despite these exercises should discuss surgical treatment with their physician. The latest version of these exercises can be found at the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons web site: http://orthoinfo.aaos.org/fact/thr_report.cfm?Thread_ID=15&topcategory=Hand Here are some exercises intended to help prevent carpal tunnel syndrome.
Remember doing a quick five minute exercise warm-up before starting work, just as runners stretch before a run, can help prevent work-related injuries.
- Extend and stretch both wrists and fingers acutely as if they are in a hand-stand position. Hold for a count of 5.
- Straighten both wrists and relax fingers.
- Make a tight fist with both hands.
- Then bend both wrists down while keeping the fist. Hold for a count of 5.
- Straighten both wrists and relax fingers, for a count of 5.
The exercise should be repeated 10 times.
Then let your arms hang loosely at the side and shake them for a few seconds.
For more information on “Prevent Injuries America!,” call the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons’ public service telephone number 1-800-824-BONES (2663).