NIH’s Research & Recommendations for Carpal Tunnel Syndrome

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“Alternative therapies – Acupuncture and chiropractic care have benefited some patients but their effectiveness remains unproved. An exception is yoga, which has been shown to reduce pain and improve grip strength among patients with carpal tunnel syndrome.”

Question: Where is muscle (massage) therapy in this equation?  I think they forgot that the muscle system is being overused, strained and is in pain, tendons and ligaments that tug on bones and eventually cause nerve impingement. Shouldn’t we work on them too?  How about a research project that combines all three since they really take care of the Body’s maintenance requirements for improved health.

“Exercise – Stretching and strengthening exercises can be helpful in people whose symptoms have abated. These exercises may be supervised by a physical therapist, who is trained to use exercises to treat physical impairments, or an occupational therapist, who is trained in evaluating people with physical impairments and helping them build skills to improve their health and well-being. “

Non-surgical treatments recommended by the medical community are drugs.

“Drugs – In special circumstances, various drugs can ease the pain and swelling associated with carpal tunnel syndrome. Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, such as aspirin, ibuprofen, and other nonprescription pain relievers, may ease symptoms that have been present for a short time or have been caused by strenuous activity. (Great for the Liver to try and process and detox).  Orally administered diuretics (“water pills”) can decrease swelling. Corticosteroids (such as prednisone) or the drug lidocaine can be injected directly into the wrist or taken by mouth (in the case of prednisone) to relieve pressure on the median nerve and provide immediate, temporary relief to persons with mild or intermittent symptoms. (Caution: persons with diabetes and those who may be predisposed to diabetes should note that prolonged use of corticosteroids can make it difficult to regulate insulin levels. Corticosterioids should not be taken without a doctor’s prescription.)”

A vitamin is recommended.  Additionally, some studies show that vitamin B6 (pyridoxine) supplements may ease the symptoms of carpal tunnel syndrome.

Please read a book by Dr. John M. Ellis, MD and Jean Pamplin on Vitamin B6 Therapy.  The research done here suggests taking 50-400 mg a day to help with stiffness and pain.  If you have symptoms of stiffness, pain, numbness or tingling or loss of flexion (bending of joints), you may be a candidate for Vitamin B6 therapy. (Pg. 7) Vitamin B6 is a lot safer to try than an injection of corticosterioids.  And an injection may have  to be repeated every so many months as it is temporary, as the cause was not dealt with only the symptoms.

Side Effects of Drugs with Nutrient Depletion:

Cortisone – nutrients depleted – calcium, folic acid, magnesium, potassium, selenium, Vit C, Vit D, zinc; Prednisone – all of the above but add Vit D.  Aspirin – folic acid, iron, potassium, sodium, Vit C.

Research Ongoing by NIH

Millions of dollars in grant money is funding scientists through NIH’s National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine “investigating the effects of acupuncture on pain, loss of median nerve function, and changes in the brain associated with carpal tunnel syndrome. In addition, a randomized clinical trial designed to evaluate the effectiveness of osteopathic manipulative treatment in conjunction with standard medical care is underway. Evaluations of these therapies and other therapies will help to tailor patient treatment programs.”

Please enlighten me ~ how long does it take in this research to prove that by balancing the Body structurally (Chiropractic and Osteopathy) releases nerve compression and by utilizing muscle therapy (massage, PT, OT) to relieve tense and over tight muscles from over use and strain,  and to begin to see that Alternative Therapies can prevent continued Carpal Tunnel, that can reduce the worker compensation costs for every company.  This has been going on since I first wrote my book on Prevention of Carpal Tunnel Syndrome in 1992.  And since I became a Massage Therapist in 1985.  Two decades and billions of dollars spent on WC claims, with many repeated CTS surgeries… and that 99% of all CTS surgeries are not CTS and may not be necessary!

The cost of this is billions of dollars in unnecessary surgeries and sorry to say this, but laziness on all persons to learn self-care for preventing any musculoskeletal disorder.  Taking care of the Body is a full-time job.  The message is to INVEST in your Body’s well being and Carpal Tunnel Syndrome and others will fade away like all the other epidemics medicine has created for us.

Alternative Therapies are part of most countries healthcare system.  Don’t you think we should make it part of ours?  If people had a choice to choose to prevent an illness, a disorder and get the kind of care they needed to stay productive, live without pain, and not take drugs, and were educated on Complimentary Medicine, I think we would all choose this first. Resource: Drug-Induced Nutrient Depletion Handbook

Write your Senators and Congressmen in your state… we need a healthcare system that is for us, to give us the choice, not fatten the pockets of the AMA and pharmaceutical companies.  Demand a better Health Care System… Voice for Alternative/Complimentary Therapies.

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