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  1. #1
    Billy Boy's Avatar
    Billy Boy is offline Retired Moderator
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    Post Carpial Tunnel Syndrome CTS

    After reading that a lot of you guys seem to be suffering from various forms of hand, wrist and aching forearms I was curious at what might be causing this so I done a little research and found the following out.

    What is Carpal Tunnel Syndrome (CTS)?

    CTS is a painful repetitive motion disorder and is much in the same bracket as RSI that secretaries taxi drivers and typists suffer from.
    It directly affects the median nerve. This nerve travels from your forearm into your hand through a tunnel in the wrist. The tunnel is made up of 8 carpial bones of the wrist on 3 sides and the strong transverse carpal ligament in situated on the top. This tunnel is also home to the flexor tendons that move the fingers. A sheath called Synovium covers each flexor tendon. With repetitive flexing and extension of the wrist the sheaths can become inflamed and thick and creates excessive pressure on the tunnel. As the pressure continues to build it has no where to be dispersed and then causes pressure on the median nerve which produces the symptoms of CTS

    What are the symptoms?

    The symptoms vary greatly for an individual but there are some common symptoms.
    Tingling or numbness in the index finger or the middle finger.
    Pain in the forearm or even in the shoulder.
    Thumb index finger or middle finger may feel swollen/useless.
    Loss of strength and the muscle at the bottom of the thumb begins to atrophy.

    The causes of CTS

    Any form of repetitive or forceful movement can cause the sheaths in the forearms to become swollen.
    Repetitive and forceful grasping with hands.
    Repetitive bending of the wrists
    Broken or dislocated bones in the wrist that produces swelling
    Arthritis
    Thyroid gland imbalances
    Diabetes
    Menopause
    Pregnancy
    In BB CTS is very common and can be caused by improper weight training techniques.
    Grasping a barbell or DB in the fingers excessive or forceful pulling of the bar.
    Performing wrist curls to often
    Using weights that are too heavy to keep under control
    Hormonal changes/imbalances from AAS use. Excessive use/abuse of Human Growth Hormone (HGH) has been recorded at severely increasing this disorder

    Treatment and do you have it?

    It is possible that you can have all the symptoms without actually having CTS but that the median is not being compressed.
    Dr G.Hacker an MD and Orthopaedic surgeon says
    “The only way to truly diagnose CTS is through the administration of an electrical nerve conduction velocity test, which measures the speed at which a nerve conducts an electrical impulse. When the nerve is compressed as it is in CTS the velocity of conduction is slowed greatly”

    Mild cases are usually treated with a wrist splint, which is worn at night to prevent the wrist from bending and allows the tunnel to remain open relieving pressure and inflammation.

    In more severe cases a cortisone injection into the carpial tunnel can be effective. If both of these fail two types of surgery can be undertaken open and endoscopy

    Prevention

    The bottom line appears to be that stretching the wrist and hand can reduce the tension on the hand and wrist, but if you do experience the above problems most of the time you should see a Doctor.

    Exercises

    1 Wrist Extensor stretch
    Hold your elbow straight, grasp your fingers and hand and gently bend your hand downwards to your feet until you feel a stretch on the top of your hand, wrist and forearm. This should also be performed pulling you hand upwards

    2 Paper crumbling
    With your wrist resting on a table gently crumble a piece of paper in your hand. This improves grip.

    Hope it helps a little bit and explains why you seem to get it with AAS use and the extra weight you lift with the stregth increases achieved.

    Billy

  2. #2
    dumbells101's Avatar
    dumbells101 is offline Senior Member
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    Very nice work Billy Boy....You get an A on this paper!

  3. #3
    Billy Boy's Avatar
    Billy Boy is offline Retired Moderator
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    Thanks DB101

    Just a brief outline really but useful to me b,c I learnt a bit more

    Billy

  4. #4
    Pete235's Avatar
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    Re: Carpial Tunnel Syndrome CTS

    The causes of CTS

    Any form of repetitive or forceful movement can cause the sheaths in the forearms to become swollen.
    Repetitive and forceful grasping with hands.
    Repetitive bending of the wrists

    So Billy...what you're telling me is we can get CTS from........naw, too easy. Since we now have well respected female members I won't go any further....but you guys do see where I was going with that...don't you

    Pete

  5. #5
    Billy Boy's Avatar
    Billy Boy is offline Retired Moderator
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    No No Noo Pete that was not good!! You,re a mod now things like that should,nt enter your head - LOL

    When I wrote it I thought just a matter of time before someone says something!!

    Naughty Pete

    Billy

  6. #6
    Tobey is offline Retired IRON CHEF Mod
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    Sore Wrist

    Now Pete,
    We all know that NOONE here on AR has that problem? NO,NO, Not us maybe some of them other BB boards, NOT OURS I mean us? com,on. We're Anabolic review! We 're mods, we have a rep to keep up. Don't we?
    Tobey
    Ok every once in awhile, maybe just a little bit.

  7. #7
    Billy Boy's Avatar
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    Since starting my cycle I know understand what you guys mean by the pains in your forearms and got to agree it must be the AAS causing it.

  8. #8
    TNT's Avatar
    TNT
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    Cool I Second the Motion . . .

    Great post, Billy - very informative!

    One thing I would caution everyone about is that if you get a pain in the wrist (or any other joint), you should not automatically assume that it's Carpal Tunnel Syndrome. CTS is only one of the common joint problems that BB's experience; the other common ones are tendonitis (which is different from CTS) and tenosynovitis (ditto).

    I learned my lesson a couple of years ago when I got a major pain in the wrists from not keeping tight form when I was lifting. The diagnosis was "DeQuervain's Tenosinovitis," which, instead of affecting the tendon directly, affects the tendon sheath. DeQuervain's is diagnosed by way of the Finklestein Test (I kid you not) - you make a fist around your thumb (that is, your thumb is bent under your couple of fingers), then bend outward at the wrist (in the direction of your little finger, or away from the body). If it hurts like all hell, you've got DeQuervain's. The treatment is simple - a steroid shot to the wrist (sorry, guys, it was corticosteroid, not anabolic steroid).

    Regardless of diagnosis, however, your body can only handle a few cortisone shots to any one area - most physicians will max them out at three shots. After that, it's surgery - a very motivating factor in terms of keeping proper form up when you're lifting.

    That's why, these days, I tend to do any work with my wrists (including biceps) with circuit equipment (preferably Nautilus or Icarian) rather than dumb bells or bars - the circuit forces me to keep correct position better than I would with the free weights. (Yeah, so I'm not a purist anymore, but at least I haven't needed any more of those freakin' shots.)
    Last edited by TNT; 11-01-2001 at 11:12 PM.

  9. #9
    rangerdudeleads is offline Senior Member
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    im glad I read this cause my left wrist hurts and went to doctor and doc gave me inflammatories and it didnt help, he said he can operate on it but a chance of messing wrist up more cause the area of the injury.He told me itll be best to just leave it alone.

  10. #10
    morphias is offline New Member
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    I have been cycling A.S. for years but only after using hgh for 6 months did I ever start having C.T.S. problems .

  11. #11
    letsgetwithit's Avatar
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    common vitamin B-6 helps out a little on CTS. Have had it for a while now, I am barber on military base. (talk about repetitive) Surgery not gonna happen for as long as I can help it. If you do have CTS it shouldn't hurt at all when on a cycle, That will usually get rid of any minor inflamations been used as a treatment by the doc for me a few times. (no not the good ones but he said should give the same result if I was using an anabolic ) Make sure you stretch everything before workin it.

    And pete if your doing that same repetitive motion that often CTS is the least of your worries.LOL

    Just funnin, but the vits do help a little.

    LGWI

  12. #12
    willus72 is offline New Member
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    i didnt read the whole post but in case it didnt say i thought that id mention that one can get carpial from taping the dumbells together. i see people doing it at the gym all the time and i think its silly.

  13. #13
    omen78's Avatar
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    Very informative... as always.

  14. #14
    beefydragon's Avatar
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    cycle or no cycle, it's the same rule of thumb from my previous experience...
    everyone's gotta do their stretching before and after your workout...

    BillyBoy's article is very accurate and covers the aspects of CTS. I myself have CTS on my wrists... (no, it's not what you're thinking) I'm a computer geek remember?!?
    But the exercise of pulling your fingers inward towards your wrist is a very good workout to stretch out your muscle and also minimizes the irritation to the nerves.

    If you want a fun toy, go to Sharper Image and get one of those Dyna-Flex power balls... they work against your motion as the ball moves and helps you build a stronger wrist...

  15. #15
    Chocolate's Avatar
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    i have mad pains in my forearms kinda like a shin splint i guess...
    i just work through it sometimes on arm and chest days i will take an anti-inflammatory before my workout and it seems to help a lot... i hear of a lot of people getting these pains and alll i can say is try and work through it.
    also streching and working out your forearms does help.

  16. #16
    dragon69 is offline Member
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    I treat these conditions regularly in my office and there are many different causes of symptoms such as these.....the cause is RARELY ever the one in the description above.
    Usually there is a problem with a nerve or artery in the arm or neck due to compression. Another VERY common cause of pain below the elbow is very tight forearm flexors (palm side of the forearm). They will need to be stretched and may even need treatment by a professional such as a therapist or chiropractor.

  17. #17
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    I had CTS surgery on both hands last year. I had suffered from CTS since my early 20's. (I'm now 39) I grew up in the country and worked like a slave in my teens. Mostly hauling hay and digging and driving fence posts. In addition, I was always into throwing steel and my favorite lifts are deadlift and squat. I also did bodywork on cars for several years and that also contributed to my CTS. My right hand was very severe, to the point nerve damage was starting to happen. My left hand was very bad. Many times after hard training I could barely hold a fork to eat. And when I would do simple things like turning a door knob, shake someone's hand, pick up my 2 year old, it would cause incredible pain like I had grabbed a hold of an electric cord. At night, I had to sleep with my hands hanging off the foot of the bed to keep them from going numb.

    I finally, reluctantly, went and had the surgery. The doctor said he had only one similar case as bad as mine, and that surgery and mine, was the thickest tendons and muscle tissue he had ever cut through. This comes from a doctor that performs this procedure on numerous NFL players. The player he was comparing my tissue to is Wayne Martin DE - New Orleans Saints. When I had started seeing the Doctor, he would give me cortisone shots into my hand to help ease the symptoms and he also gave me braces that you wear at night.

    Which leads to my point.

    At night while sleeping, it is a natural reaction to curls one hands and arms at the wrist as in a fetal position. This natural reaction causes you to tighten your forearms and hands as the wrist curls and torques the forearm compressing the Carpal Tunnel. This is quite common for people suffering from CTS and the adversity depends on the severity of the CTS and the amount of use the hands have experienced. Meaning, if you go outside and do yard work all day, and you dig a bunch of dirt, likely you will have severe symptoms of CTS for a couple days.

    As mentioned in other posts, this can also effect the elbows. Some people with CTS experience numbness all the way through the shoulder, up into the neck and even in the face.

    Since having the surgery a year ago, I have had a lot of relief. Not perfect but a hell of alot better. I no longer have the electric shock feelings and am able to lift weights again for the first time in years. The pain in my hands had gotten so bad I quit training with weights.

    I still sometimes wear the braces at night, because my hands still sometimes go numb at night if I don't. This is especially true on days I do back, deadlifts, curls or any other grip and wrist intense movement.

    I would recommend to anyone that is having frequent or moderate symptoms at night, look into getting the wrist braces to wear while sleeping. It may provide enough relief to avoid the surgery.
    Last edited by THE RHINO; 06-05-2005 at 12:20 PM.

  18. #18
    dragon69 is offline Member
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    nah, go get it treated by an RMT or chiropractor. Trust me....read my post above

  19. #19
    THE RHINO's Avatar
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    I've been going to chiropractors for 35 years, and not one of them/you could do jack shit for my CTS. I avoided the knife for 10 years and regret not having the surgery sooner.

  20. #20
    dragon69 is offline Member
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    hmmmm, well I know I produce good results.
    You may be one of the FEW that actually have a problem with the tunnel itself.
    Glad you got some relief.

  21. #21
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    i have mild CTS in both hands. found out when i was 19 from heavy weightlifting bb ...overtraining etc. wrist curls...to much etc ...I was an addict. anyways, they did a ..I belive a EKG, dont remember..basically they stuck metal rods in my arms...from my biceps..tris...forearms..down etc. and they shock you to see the reaction of your nervs/hand/finger movements. i have it, and its NOT something you want. sometimes my middle finger will tingle...its a pain, feels like there is no blood to the hands. not fun. turn your hand over..and slightly tap on the wrist where your joint connects the hand to the arm. if it tingles uncontrollably or hurts REALLY bad, you might have mild, to heavy. CTS. just tape your finger on your backside of the wrist. it will normally tingle a little bit, but if you have a problem, you will REALLY feel it. GW

  22. #22
    dragon69 is offline Member
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    OK guildy, the test you had was a Nerve Conduction test. It really doesn't tell you that much really and have seen many diagnosis that were wrong. I see that in my clinic all the time.
    One thing about your case is that your symptoms do not have CTS pattern to them. Sounds like your Lunate bone in your wrist may be dislocated (by the tapping response), Pronator Teres syndrome or some sort of Thoracic OUtlet Syndrome....which is the most likely and what I see the most of. I will be impossible to tell you 100% without seeing you in person of course, but I can assure you it's not CTS. PM me if you want. I wonder if you've been experiencing any neck pain or headaches.....?

  23. #23
    itsdarock's Avatar
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    bump

  24. #24
    smmrsm2000 is offline New Member
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    great post....lately i have had numbness around my thumb and forefinger and tingling in my hand and wrist. i do a lot of repetetive stuff at work, and i was wondering if i may be getting carpal tunnel....now i will try the exercises in the post and see if they help. it may save me a trip to the doctor. thanks for the info bro...

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