What To Expect After Carpal Tunnel Surgery

What To Expect After Carpal Tunnel Surgery

When you’re suffering from carpal tunnel syndrome; hand surgery helps you regain the use of your hands and allow you to a lead fuller life, so that you can write, create, make things, pick up your children and perform the important day to day tasks that make up your lives, all of which are very important in having a sense of purpose.

Hands are a huge part of how we are able to get things done every single day, and even though the surgery will regain your ability to use them, the first few days after the procedure can be a bit of an adjustment and change. Should you use your hands or rest them, how do you avoid putting strain on them and how long with carpal tunnel surgery recovery be? In other words, what to expect after carpal tunnel surgery? For more information, read on about expectations and aftercare when you’ve undergone carpal tunnel syndrome surgery.

Carpal Tunnel Surgery

The carpal tunnel ligament and median nerve are located in the wrist area. When a person is suffering from carpal tunnel syndrome, there is intense swelling and pressure on the median nerve and wrist, which leads to tingling, numbness and other effects. This condition can be triggered by arthritis, trauma or injury, or fluid retention. Carpal tunnel syndrome is exacerbated by repetitive strain from prolonged typing, and the use of power tools. Carpal tunnel surgery helps relieve the syndrome by cutting the transverse carpal ligament which will reduce the pressure in the wrist area. The surgery can be done endoscopically, which will involve smaller incisions or it will be done as an open surgery procedure, which will involve a bigger incision.

Carpal Tunnel Surgery Aftercare Tips

After carpal tunnel syndrome surgery, the hardest thing is going to be giving your hands the rest and recovery they need; which can be hard because your hands are so essential to so many tasks we need to do.

  • After the surgery, pain, swelling, weakness and numbness are common side effects of the procedure.
  • Your hand will be wrapped straight after surgery, and you will have stitches in for a few weeks following the procedure. During this time, it’s important not to strain your hands by lifting heavy items or putting too much pressure on them.
  • If you have a job that requires typing, handling power tools make sure to take enough time off for you to heal from the surgery, and for the desired outcome. Your surgeon will let you know the recommended time off according to your anatomy and how well you’re healing.
  • Rest your hand and keep it elevated to alleviate pressure, swelling and pain and consider getting a special pillow to protect your hands.
  • The speed at which you’ll recover is dependent on whether you had open surgery or if it was done using an endoscopic approach.
  • You will have to refrain from driving for up to a week, the exact time will depend on how you’re healing. Tasks like writing can be resumed within a week or two, but you will still feel some numbness or heaviness in your arm. This should subside in the following weeks and months.
  • In severe cases, you might need occupational or physical therapy after the procedure to regain full mobility.


Carpal tunnel syndrome surgery can regain the full use and functionality of your hands, and the joy and freedom to be creative and productive again. That is what you can expect after carpal tunnel surgery. It’s important to talk to a surgeon about whether this is the right procedure for you. Get in touch with us for more information, and to book a consultation.

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