When people think ‘chiropractic’ they often think of back and neck problems. But chiropractic has many applications beyond these typical uses and it can improve the quality of life for a broad range of health conditions. One such condition is carpal tunnel syndrome, a repetitive stress injury (RSI). Chiropractic can be a beneficial treatment for patients seeking non-invasive relief from this ailment that has become all too common in the modern world.
RSIs fall into a category of injuries that are caused by repetitive motion, such as typing or assembly line work, which causes pain and injury over time. The earlier an RSI is diagnosed and treated, the better the outcome can be. Diagnosis includes a physical examination and possibly X-rays. Treatment consists of an adjustment of the upper spine. Misalignment in the spine could contribute to symptoms of carpal tunnel syndrome. Chiropractors perform adjustments (also called spinal manipulations) that aim to correct improper alignment in the spine. The chiropractor typically performs an adjustment using his or her hands, but sometimes devices are employed. Chiropractors may also adjust and treat other areas of the body as needed, including the wrist and arm. Cold laser therapy may also be used to help reduce inflammation, increase blood flow and oxygenation to the area. The chiropractor may also advise the patient to rest the affected arm, to apply cold to reduce inflammation, to perform appropriate exercises or to wear a splint or brace to immobilize the area.
In one research study, 25 individuals diagnosed with carpal tunnel syndrome reported significant improvements in several measures of strength, range-of-motion and pain after receiving chiropractic treatment. Most of these improvements were maintained for at least six months. A second study compared the effects of chiropractic care with conservative medical care (wrist supports and ibuprofen) among 91 people with carpal tunnel syndrome. Both groups experienced significant improvement in nerve function, finger sensation and comfort. The researchers concluded that chiropractic treatment and conservative medical care are equally effective for people with carpal tunnel syndrome. For more information, contact Natural Spine Solutions at 208-966-4425 to schedule a consultation.
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Dr. Wayne M. Fichter Jr. is a chiropractor at Natural Spine Solutions. The business is located at 3913 Schreiber Way in Coeur d’Alene, 208-966-4425.