• Causes of Carpal Tunnel Syndrome

    Anything that causes irritation, inflammation, fluid retention, or an abnormal growth in or around the carpal tunnel can cause carpal tunnel syndrome, including:
    • Repetitive movements of the hands, wrists, or fingers—especially overactive use of a computer keyboard, certain musical instruments, or hand tools
    • Use of vibrating equipment or tools
    • A narrow carpal tunnel (due to heredity or other causes)
    • Wrist injury:
      • Burns
      • Broken bones
      • Compression or crush injuries
    • Arthritis leading to swelling within the carpal tunnel
    • Diabetes
    • Raynaud's disease, which impairs blood flow in the hands
    • Water retention due to: Hormone-related conditions, such as: Medications, such as:
      • Birth control pills
      • Cortisone pills or shots
      • Some high blood pressure drugs
    • Tumors and cysts in the carpal tunnel


    Carpal tunnel syndrome. EBSCO DynaMed website. Available at: http://www.ebscohost.com/dynamed. Updated October 8, 2012. Accessed October 23 ,2012.

    Katz RT. Carpal tunnel syndrome: a practical review. Am Fam Physician. 1994;49:1371-1379, 1385-1386.

    Patijn J, Vallejo R, Janssen M, et al. Carpal tunnel syndrome. Pain Pract. 2011;11(3):297-301.

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