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Tag: Wrist Bones

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General Wrists

What is the Carpal Tunnel?

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The phrase “carpal tunnel syndrome” is well-known but often misunderstood. If you have been experiencing pain in your wrists and have been diagnosed with CTS, chances are you asked: What does that mean? What is the carpal tunnel? Is having a carpal tunnel bad?

Before we go any further, let’s get this straight first: You are supposed to have a carpal tunnel. You were born with it.

But it’s not supposed to hurt.

What is the Carpal Tunnel?

The carpal tunnel is literally a tunnel found in your wrists. It is a space in the wrist where nine tendons and the median nerve pass from the arm into the hand. About an inch wide, it protects the median nerve and flexor tendons that bend the fingers and thumb.

It is formed by two layers: a deep carpal arch and a superficial flexor retinaculum.  The bottom and sides of this tunnel are formed by small wrist bones called carpal bones. The top, located on the palm side, is a strong band of connective tissue called the transverse carpal ligament.

The nine tendons in this area of the wrist are:

  • One flexor pollicis longus
  • Four tendons of flexor digitorum profundus
  • Four tendons of flexor digitorum superficialis

Why Do My Wrists Hurt Sometimes?

Pain in the wrists may be caused by carpal tunnel syndrome, which occurs when there is pressure and swelling in this tunnel. Possible causes of CTS include arthritis, thyroid conditions, pregnancy, diabetes, high blood pressure, and injury.

A significant factor believed to cause or exacerbate the pain is repetitive use of the wrists, especially without taking proper precautions. Examples include participating in sports, games, or other hobbies, as well as use of a computer keyboard or tools at work.

Dr. Arora will perform ultrasound testing or order an electromyography (EMG) study to confirm the diagnosis prior to proceeding with any significant treatments.

Prevention and self-care tips may help alleviate the pain associated with this syndrome. They include using ergonomically designed furniture and equipment; using proper form and protective gear while operating tools; and wearing a wrist guard while participating in activities that strain your wrists.

In some cases, more significant remedies may be advised, such as wearing a brace on the wrists when you sleep, using oral steroid medications, or undergoing steroid injections.  For persistent pain, you may elect to undergo a surgical procedure that enlarges the tunnel in order to decrease pressure.

For more information about what the carpal tunnel is, what it is comprised of, and how to alleviate wrist pain, visit the Arora Hand Surgery website or call us to make an appointment.

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Breaking the Myths: Facts About Bones We’d Like to Set Straight

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Unless you’re walking through a science lab, you really can’t see bones with your own eyes. Bones are literally from head to toe in every human being, yet most of us don’t know much more about them than what we see on a Halloween costume. In that sense, is it any wonder that there are as many myths about bones as there are bones in the human body? (That number is 206, by the way.)

It’s not that we have a bone to pick, necessarily.  But we do feel it’s important to clear up a few facts about bones – especially in regard to the hand, wrist, and elbow – in order to arm our patients with relevant information.

Let’s start with these:

1. No bones about it: There’s nothing funny about a funny bone.

Have you ever fallen on your elbow? Chances are, you didn’t laugh. That really hurts!

But it hurts in an unusual way, causing a “funny” sensation you don’t normally feel. That’s one reason why it’s called a funny bone.

The second reason is a bit punnier. That sensation you feel is actually caused by the ulnar nerve in your elbow rubbing against the humerus bone, which extends from your elbow to your shoulder. Humerus … funny. Get it?

Arora Blog Myths about Bones inner image 1142025302
The sensation you feel when you hit your “funny bone” is actually caused by the ulnar nerve in your elbow rubbing against the humerus bone.

2. The phrase ‘dry as a bone’ is hogwash.

Bones are actually soft and slightly flexible. In fact, more than 30 percent of healthy bones is water, and blood runs through them. They also contain a soft tissue called bone marrow, as well as calcium, phosphorus, sodium, and collagen. Dead bones do become dry and brittle, however.

3. All bones are not created equal.

In essence, they might look the same, but some are stronger than others. In fact, the femur, or thighbone, is the strongest, and a bone in the ear known as the stapes is among the most fragile.

4. Bones are not all the same color.

Bones are not truly white, at least not all of them. The colors can vary, such as off-white, beige, and light brown.

5. You know your hands are bony, but they’re probably even bonier than you think.

About 25 percent of the bones in the human body is in your two hands. Each hand has the following 27 bones:

  • 8 carpal bones, essentially found in the wrist area
  • 5 metacarpal bones at the palm area
  • 14 phalanges (finger bones) that are connected by joints and ligaments
Arora Blog Myths about Bones inner image 671724502
Each human hand has 27 bones: 8 carpal bones, 5 metacarpal bones, and 14 phalanges.

6. There is hope after osteoporosis.

Many people believe that once you get osteoporosis, there’s no going back. But there are options. Certain exercises can strengthen bone, and hormone therapy may allow your body to rebuild bone.

7. Bones can’t grow back.

Bones can heal and repair themselves, such as in the case of fractures. However, if you completely lose a bone, it won’t grow back.

This article barely strikes the surface regarding facts about bones and common myths. For more of the bare bones on this topic, visit our website and explore our educational posts.

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Dr. Aroras office from my first call to schedule my appointment was friendly. Walking in the first day, I felt like I was in a nice atmosphere. Dr. Arora was EXCELLENT in taking great care of my hand injury. He was gentle and very understanding to the concerns I had about my hand. His expertise was admirable and I would recommend anyone with an injury to their hand to his office to be under his care. Because of him, I have healed faster than expected and will make an 100% recovery! Thank you Dr.

Jackie S.

I first thought I was going to have to have painful injections or surgery, but Dr. Arora suggested physical therapy may do the trick. I was doubtful, but I agreed to do it. Now, my pain is gone, and with the help of an ergonomic keyboard at work to keep my hands in the correct position, I am virtually pain free. The therapy strengthened my wrists and shoulders, and built more flexibility into my wrists.

Jerry T.

My experience with this doctor was positive from the outset. Dr. Arora was kind and spent a great deal of time with me. Staff was friendly. The office was nice and bright.

Ariel G.

Very friendly and helpful Great staff!!! Doctor Arora was very professional and did great work. I was very happy with everything!

L B.