Carpel Tunnel Surgery?

So, First the good news-the neurologist said my nerves (after some nerve conduction test thingy's that involved electrodes and then a pin that zapped you for good measure) looked great, he saw no evidence of D affecting my nerves. The bad news, apparently, the carpel tunnel is so severe that they super-zapped me a few times and were unable to get any reading on the other end, and that, apparently, indicates a pretty smushed median nerve in both wrists. He said I would not need to try and rehabilitate my hands, that I should proceed straight to a surgeon and just have an operation to release the pressure on the nerve, or my hand strength would get worse and worse and I'd eventually not be able to grip or work with my hands at all.

Now, I've been dealing with the numbness/tingling for years. It went away the first few years I had really decent control of my D, but lately, even with decent control, my hands have really been hurting and making a lot of things I used to enjoy, like drawing, knitting or working on a computer, frustrating and painful, so I guess I really need to do this.

Anyone else have surgery for carpel tunnel? Any advice or experience you would be willing to share? Did it relieve the pain and numbness and if so, is it true that it can come back after a few years? I guess more than anything I'm just nervous as of all my friends who have went for the nerve conduction tests, they all got sent to physical therapy and given wrist braces, I don't know of anyone who actually went straight to surgery, and I'm a bit nervous, should I ask for a second opinion, what do I ask a surgeon, just not sure what I may need to look out for.


I've suffered from CTS for more than a decade. My first effort pushed physical rehab and I bought myself a fair number of years by working on my flexibility and strength. I used a wrist brace and all that. Despite that, the CTS eventually came back with a vengence. I lost feeling in my index and middle fingers. I was repeatedly told my D had nothing to do with it, but I know that is not true. I had surgery on my right wrist (worst one) last august. I had the ´╗┐´╗┐´╗┐endoscopic version and there is almost no scar. I had feeling return to my middle finger, but after six months, I am still numb in my index finger.

The release surgery cuts through the tendon, which heals over, but leaving a larger wrist tunnel. If the condition returns, they can repeat the operation, but after that, well, game over.

I've become convinced that I still need to keep my blood sugar controlled and maintain flexibility and strength in order to manage the condition.

Hope that helps.

I had my surgery (both of them) about 20 years ago. Granted things have changed greatly, but that is one surgery I am very happy I had. My hands were numb, I was afraid I would drop my kids if I held them, and it hurt like crazy. I had 6 stitches in each hand (did them one at a time, a month apart) and within the week, I could change a diaper (although dh did that for awhile) and things cleared up quickly. I found the braces good, but not good enough to take care of the numbness I wore those mainly because I Had little kids to take care of...but the surgery was a cinch and no complications at all.

I had the surgery in 1989 and it completely solved the problem - no more numbness, no more pain. I went through the wrist braces and other treatments and wish I hadn't waited that long. And that was over 20 years ago when the surgery was quite new. The recovery was a pain in the butt - can't remember the time frame for each hand, but it was hard to operate with only one hand for several days, but I live alone and I did it! I highly recommend the surgery.

I had no surgery. I took a strong dose of Vitamin B6 therapy for 6 months, and did intense physical therapy (my mom is a physical and occupational therapist). My carpal tunnel was used to be so severe, I couldn't work. My issues are now mostly done with. I hardly have problems with it.

I had the surgery both hands at the same time; I wouldn't suggest that. I was out of work for 3 weeks. But I was doing heavy construction. Before surgery I did the B6, braces, meds, PT, chiropractor, and anything else you can think of. I put off the surgery for 3 years til I was only sleeping 2-3 hours a night. I had relief the first day after surgery. I have had few issues since but they are managable and go away quickly. My surgery was about 10 years ago.

Thanks everyone who replied, the day after I posted this, I got hit with Kidney Stones, which I never experienced before, so I'm only now catching up. Go see the ortho today, so we'll see what he says, it's so cold here now, my hands are throbbing, so I think since there's so much positive feedback, I'll proceed with the surgery while I still have decent health care coverage.

Thanks again everyone!