Steroid treatment effective for carpal tunnel syndrome

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Steroids improved finger dexterity in patients with carpal tunnel syndrome.
Steroids improved finger dexterity in patients with carpal tunnel syndrome.

(HealthDay News) — Local steroid injection is effective for treatment of carpal tunnel syndrome (CTS) and improves hand function, according to a small study published online Sept. 13 in the International Journal of Rheumatic Diseases.

Ho So, from Kwong Wah Hospital in Hong Kong, and colleagues randomized patients to either treatment with local steroid injection (25 participants) or nocturnal wrist splinting (25 participants) for treatment of CTS.

The researchers found that four weeks after treatment there was significant improvement in Boston Carpal Tunnel Questionnaire (BCTQ) scores for both groups. However, there was no statistically significant difference in BCTQ scores between the two groups after treatment. Only the steroid group saw improvement in finger dexterity. The steroid group also had higher patient satisfaction scores and, as a group, the patients took fewer painkillers after treatment.

"Although local steroid injection and nocturnal wrist splinting were equally effective in the treatment of patients with CTS, only the former improved objective hand function," the authors write.

Reference

  1. So H, Chung VCH, Cheng JCK, Yip RML. Local steroid injection versus wrist splinting for carpal tunnel syndrome: A randomized clinical trial. Int J Rheum Dis. 2017 Sep 13. doi: 10.1111/1756-185X.13162

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