What causes carpal tunnel syndrome?

1 answer | Last updated: Sep 20, 2016
A fellow caregiver asked...

What causes carpal tunnel syndrome?


Expert Answers

Jennifer Serafin, N.P. is a registered nurse and geriatric nurse practitioner at the Jewish Homes for the Aged in San Francisco.

Carpal tunnel syndrome is caused by compression of a nerve in your wrist. This nerve runs from your forearm through a "tunnel" in the wrist (called the carpal tunnel) out to the hand. If something presses on the nerve or irritates it, this can lead to the symptoms of carpal tunnel syndrome.

Many times, carpal tunnel syndrome is caused by a workplace injury or repetitive motion. For example, if you work on a computer, you may be constantly flexing at the wrist, which will cause pressure on the nerve, leading to hand numbness and tingling.