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In my previous post, I detailed information on all of the ways you can be treated for CTS non-surgically. In this post, I will look at both surgical approaches for Carpal Tunnel Release and, with the input from Dr. Boyd Haynes, provide the information you need to determine which is best for you.
So you have decided to have surgery to address the uncomfortable symptoms of CTS…now you need to know the facts about the two surgical approaches that are used for CT release.
The first surgical approach is the open approach. This approach has been used for many years and the outcome of the surgery is usually quite good and their symptoms are relieved. This approach involves the following:
- Outpatient Surgery
- A 2-inch incision in the palm
- Longer time under anesthesia
- Longer surgery time
- A longer scar
- Longer recovery time
- Activity restrictions
The endoscopic approach involves using a scope to visualize the ligament which needs to be released and performing the surgery through a surgical cannula. This approach has also been used for many years and the results are excellent for most patients, relieving their symptoms. This approach involves the following:
- Outpatient Surgery
- A 1/2-inch incision in the wrist
- Shorter time under anesthesia (approximately 7 minutes )
- Shorter surgery time
- A shorter scar
- Shorter recovery time
- Quicker return to work
- Any activity is okay, as tolerated
Dr. Boyd Haynes of Orthopaedic & Spine Center tells me the following, “The long term results of both the open and endoscopic surgeries are the same at 3 months, but the Endoscopic (ECTR) technique will get the patient back to work 2-3 times faster than the open surgery. The way I practice medicine is to only do the type of surgery that I would want to have or for my family to have. If I was having a Carpal Tunnel Release, the Endoscopic Release would be the approach I would choose.”
So, there you have it. If you have Carpal Tunnel Syndrome, consult with a Fellowship-trained, Board-Certified Orthopaedic Specialist about your treatment. That way you can ensure you have the best outcome, whatever surgical option you choose.