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Carpal tunnel syndrome(CTS) most often affects those engaged in repeated wrist flexion activities. Farriers definitely fall into that group.
The carpal tunnel is located on the anterior aspect of the wrist and is formed by the carpal bones on the bottom and the transverse carpal ligament on top. Eight tendons and their sheaths, along with the media nerve, pass through this narrow tunnel. CTS results from an inflammation of any number of these tendons, resulting in the compression of the media nerve.
Symptoms include both sensory and motor deficits resulting in tingling and numbness in the thumb, index, middle finger and the palm. Pain is also associated with CTS with many sufferers feeling discomfort during the night.
Treatment for CTS involves rest, immobilization and anti-inflammatory medications. If problems continue, a physician may try a corticosteroid injection or surgical decompression of the transverse carpal ligament.