Originally Posted by fniles
My mom is 66 years old, she has severe bilateral carpal tunnel on both hands. We do not know what caused it, because she never works, she is a housewife. She also has arthritis on her fingers.
2 months ago she had a surgery on the right hand to release the carpal tunnel. Her numbness and tingling is gone. About 1 month after the surgery she has pain on where the stiches were, then it dissappeared. Now, after 2 months, for the last 3 nights she had the pain again around where the stiches were, and last night it went to her fingers too. The pain is only there at night, during the day it is fine. She has been doing physical therapy once a week, and she is very diligent to do it on her own at home. Maybe she overdoes the therapy at home ? She said everytime she sits down and watch tv she does the putty and weight exercise with her hand.
She is suppose to have another surgery on the left hand side, but she is worry because she still has pain on the right hand.
I am wondering if this pain after 2 month of carpal tunnel surgery is normal.
Carpal tunnel syndrome is caused by the pinching of the median nerve, which goes thru the wrist and palm. Arthritis may have caused bone changes, irritation of the tendons, thickening of tendon fluid and/or scarring of this area.
Pain after surgery is common, even up to 4-6 months. However, if it improved, and now is worsening, there could be a few reasons:
1. Overuse of hand or overzealous activity/exercise
2. Swelling/fluid volume changes may cause increased or decreased pain
3. Scar formation has not been addressed (her hand therapist should have gone over scar management with her)
4. And what is called "Pillar Pain" is another possibility (use search engine to get info on this)
I would suggest that she speaks to her hand therapist and her doctor. If she has pain at night she should wear her wrist splints for preventing irritation while sleeping. She should also continue taking the pain/anti inflammatory meds the doctor prescribed for her. (Speak with the doc)