It's confirmed: I have carpal tunnel syndrome

Bo Eder

Platinum Member
So I saw my doctor today and he ran me through a few physical tests and it was confirmed that yes, I'm suffering from early stage carpal tunnel syndrome. I told him as far back as 10 years ago I'd do things and have my fingers go numb and now it seems to happen frequently.

For now, I'm wearing wrist braces on both hands and he added a med to deal with some other issues that may be contributing to this condition. I have an appointment to meet with physical therapists and they will determine over the course of the next month or so if I will need the surgery to alleviate the pressure caused by the swollen carpal tunnel on the median nerve in my hands. He wants to see if the new med will help first, and it gives the therapists time to determine the right course of action. It's kinda' refreshing when the doctor doesn't immediately want to put me under the knife. He says if there's some metabolic way to help, then let's try that first.

I told him I play drums as part of my job so I've been ordered to wear these braces for now, and to use my hands only when I need to play - but taking it easy. Now I need to tell the schools I work for that I'll be playing a bit differently, and the mouse gig will probably be on hold for a bit as I work this out (I'm slamming that one from start to finish for at least 25 minutes at a time).

He's confident that this is just a swelling issue and we'll be able to rectify it without surgery, but we'll see about that. For now my hands are on vacation in these braces! Just typing this up has taken a really long time of full arm movement! Smiles remain, though! I'm not quite as bummed out as I was when he first gave me the news earlier today ;)
 

harryconway

Platinum Member
He's confident that this is just a swelling issue and we'll be able to rectify it without surgery, but we'll see about that.
Hopefully this will be the case, and you'll be back to slammin' the skins "like a madman" soon. Best wishes.​
 

caddywumpus

Platinum Member
As a massage therapist, I would HIGHLY recommend seeking out other modalities before going under the knife. Myofascial therapy has a high success rate of dealing with carpel tunnel syndrome, and since your situation is in the early stages, it should be a cinch for somebody who knows what they're doing to alleviate your condition without an invasive procedure.
 

Andy

Administrator
Staff member
As a massage therapist, I would HIGHLY recommend seeking out other modalities before going under the knife. Myofascial therapy has a high success rate of dealing with carpel tunnel syndrome, and since your situation is in the early stages, it should be a cinch for somebody who knows what they're doing to alleviate your condition without an invasive procedure.
This sounds like very encouraging news from a professional Bo. Chin up my friend. Don't let this consume you. Just progress the positive stuff & put the doubts in a box.
 

Odd-Arne Oseberg

Platinum Member
There are a bunch of exercises that can help this. Eventually dietary changes too, if one is open to that.

Surgery should be a last resort.
 

konaboy

Pioneer Member
The good news is now you know what's going on. Hopefully therapy and meds help and if need be look for a good massage therapist like caddy said!
 

Anon La Ply

Renegade
Let's hope it doesn't come to surgery or you'll have to deal with a recovery period. On the plus side, people I know who've had the surgery say their hands feel great afterwards.
 

Duck Tape

Platinum Member
Sorry to hear Bo. Worst case scenario you get the surgery and have to wait out the recovery period, you'll be fine.

:)
 

larryace

"Uncle Larry"
Sorry to hear this Bo. You'll beat it, one way or another. No pun intended. Curious to hear what Dr. Watso says about it.
 

Formless Method

Senior Member
Bo I had beginning carpal tunnel a few years ago and I beat it by massaging my arms before and after gigs. I also gripped my stick way to tight so I loosened it. There are tons of things you can do to fix this. Many musicians on youtube show how they beat it without surgery.

I HIGHKY recommend you not get that surgery. You permanently loose control over some of the muscles in your hand. I know many drummers who have gotten this surgery and it became an even worse nightmare not to mention all of the scare tissue that will be right over your tendons. Once you cut it that is IT buddy. Find a natural remedy my friend or you may regret it for the rest of your life.

You can beat this!
 

Stroman

Platinum Member
Don't let it get you down too much, Bo. There are solutions.

I've dealt with CTS for years, aggravated by injuries I sustained in an accident. Some therapies were helpful for a time, but I did end up having to have surgery.

In my experience, there is no need to fear the surgery. Like others, I would recommend every non-invasive therapy first, but if that doesn't work for you, don't despair. The surgery was extremely helpful for me, and for everyone else I personally know who has had it done.

There is always hope, so keep yer chin up!
 

Winston_Wolf

Platinum Member
Hate to hear it Bo. At least it is encouraging to hear that you have options to choose from and hopefully be able to get things back to normal.
 
A

Anthony Amodeo

Guest
not a big deal Matt

I have beat it......so can you

I don't want to get into the whole chiropractics argument......but I am walking proof that more than a mild case of CT can be cured with no surgery needed .

there is no need for surgery to relieve pressure on the median nerve

mine was baaad.....I couldn't hold a pencil while on tour

the Doc. I saw while on the road told me I needed surgery after an examination....he added that it was fairly urgent as well because of the amount of inflammation and pressure on the median and ulnar nerve and potential damage to my transverse ligament

I got back home and saw my Chiropractor and she laughed at what he told me about urgent surgery

2 months later I was drumming with zero pain and it has not returned in almost 5 years
 
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DrumEatDrum

Platinum Member
I always wear little wrist braces.

I'd also recommend finding someone who regularly deals with musicians. As we're in Southern California, they do exist.
 
A

Anthony Amodeo

Guest
I always wear little wrist braces.

I'd also recommend finding someone who regularly deals with musicians. As we're in Southern California, they do exist.
this ^^^^^
.............

someone who regularly deals with musicians and athletes is the way to go

worked very well for me
 

alparrott

Platinum Member
You know, I've been kind of dealing with the implications of your last question -- "What would you do if you couldn't play any more?" and knowing what was going on with you, it actually had me feeling a little sick to my stomach for you. I can think of only a few things in my life I would be less reluctant to give up than drumming. And so I have a good idea the gut-turning you must be facing.

I'm really glad to hear that the prognosis is not so dire, and I'm loving the encouraging words and advice everyone is throwing on here. I'll now add my two cents: I have a lot of faith that things are going to turn out just fine. It's not going to be a big issue in the long run, you figured out something wasn't right, you got it checked out, you know what it is, you're taking care of yourself and being a good patient. Just hang in there, and I am certain the pain will recede and you can go back to the Main Street Parade, making great YouTube videos, subbing for Bermuda, and making people smile.
 
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