Carpal tunnel syndrome... what worked for you?

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11 Dec 2018, 03:18

So today I was officially diagnosed with carpal tunnel syndrome, after having my nerve velocity and conductivity tested (not the most pleasant test, but yielding interesting data!).

I’m starting with wearing wrist braces during sleep... I’d love to know what helped other people in the same situation. Did you switch to “ergonomic” keyboards? Moved from mouse to trackball? What did the trick for you?


11 Dec 2018, 06:22

I finally had CTR surgery on both hands after 45 years of CTS. Even though they said I had irreversible nerve damage, both hands improved a great deal. The braces made my hands even more numb.I've used several ergo boards over the years with good success. Probably split/skewing the halves and adding some tenting were the two most important aspects for me. I also use a modified Slimblade trackball which helps but it was necessary to lower it relative to the keyboard for better orientation.


11 Dec 2018, 07:51

I had no diagnose. Only light pain in my right wrist (and middle finger). Used a wrist brace for a little while at home. Switched to vertical mice (and removed the scroll wheel).

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11 Dec 2018, 08:51

Mine wasn’t bad enough to require surgery, but I had to wear braces for a long time plus I got a couple of courses of vitamin B shots (it is widely believed by medical professionals in Russia that vitamin B12 helps to repair damaged nerves).

I was also strongly advised to switch from mouse to trackball. I haven’t used a “normal” mouse for 4 years. Right now I use a trackball in the office and a combination of vertical mouse and touchpad at home.

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11 Dec 2018, 09:17

Switching keyboards/layouts and mice often helps me a ton... Not the best thing to know, kind of feeds the keyboard addiction. It's a vicious cycle.

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The Tiproman

11 Dec 2018, 09:18

Not diagnosed either, but steady uncomfortable feeling in my right wrist, elbow and shoulder,
which completely disappeared in a matter of days after I switched to a RollerMouse.


11 Dec 2018, 10:42

A rollermouse in work helped the lower level of pain in my wrist and elbow.

This lets me save my mouse time for home when i need it .

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11 Dec 2018, 13:32

clickityClackity wrote: Switching keyboards/layouts and mice often helps me a ton... Not the best thing to know, kind of feeds the keyboard addiction. It's a vicious cycle.
Finally I have a solid argument to make to my wife when she asks me why I need all that old junk! :lol:

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11 Dec 2018, 15:14

Prevention is always better than treatment, but now that carpal tunnel syndrome has already occurred, follow the physician's instructions for recovery. During recovery and afterward, use a good typing posture. This consists of keeping the wrists straight and not using a wrist rest while typing. In addition, if you can tolerate aspirin or other anti-inflammatory drugs, take one of these during your recovery phase. Be patient -- damaged nerves take a long time to recover. Be sure to keep using preventative measures such as good typing posture to avoid recurrences. Good luck!


27 Aug 2019, 17:01

Rather than spin another thread on carpal tunnel syndrome, I hope no one will mind me resurrecting this relatively mature one.

I've had wrist problems for years, hence my interest in keyboards etc. I suppose. The sensation is quite similar to grasping the live terminals of a bare mains plug. No, not an exaggeration!

Recently it's become so bad that the local doctor prescribed injections of cortisone (or something?!) into the affected right wrist.

The first injection was a sudden and a surprisingly massive relief from the constant pain and numbness. I had not realised to what degree I was in pain up to then. I was feeling quite high that evening from losing the pain, and emotional too. The pain really grinds you down!

But it does not last. I've had to take a second injection, and just like the first it has worn off after about ten months. I'm visiting the doctor soon for a third, but also to take advice on alternatives such as surgery.

My mum had very similar problems, and in both wrists. Surgery was successful, and for nearly thirty years her wrists have not given her any more trouble. But she did warn to be sure about the skill of the surgeon. A operation mistake in the wrist can have a life-changing result!

Has anyone else had surgery? Are there other treatments besides injections and surgery?

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Gotta start somewhere

27 Aug 2019, 18:08

Actually I have wrist pain from playing too much CSGO and PUBG and this guy helped me:


27 Aug 2019, 18:23

It's a good video, thanks Redmaus.

The thing is, I have very strong forearm muscles from martial arts and woodworking with traditional hand tools, including Japanese planes which need a very firm and controlled grip.

Strength and flexibility of the wrists are good, but it appears that tendons passing through the carpal tunnel have grown lumps, or nodules, and these sometimes trap and pinch the nerves when gripping.

When a nerve gets trapped like that, it feels quite literally like a huge electric shock in the hand and forearm. And then the nerves are inflamed, and the numbness and tingling grow rapidly after.

The injections seem to control the inflammation, and have a "thinning" effect on the flesh that might reduce the lumps on the tendons, but I wonder if the thinning also weakens the tendons overall?

I'll keep the thread updated with news as I learn more from the doctor.


27 Aug 2019, 19:37

I switched to the Ergodox with Colemak setup about 4 years ago because of my RSI. I had already made the leap to improving my touch typing and not resting my wrists on table, which helped but not enough. Stretching you forearms and making sure you are sitting high enough to float your hands over the keyboard is also important. Note I also have cysts in my wrists, they have hurt less and less with the change of posture and keyboard. Generally they will go away or reduce in size according to my doctor. Not sure about Carpal Tunnel surgery though, but it sounds like a surgery of last resort.


27 Aug 2019, 19:48

Hi Mike, I agree that posture does help, and not only when typing.

The activity that brings on the inflammation the worst is not keyboard typing, mind you. It's excessive DIY, working with hand tools. Gripping screwdrivers and turning hard is probably the biggest cause of pain.

I've collected a large range of power tools, and in particular impact wrenches, because of it so that I don't rely on the strength of my wrists so much.


07 Sep 2019, 00:39

Sometimes my right thumb and pinky are numb. Might this be a symptom of CTS? Maybe I should switch to a vertical ergonomic mouse?

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09 Sep 2019, 06:45

I think I got cts from using a keytronic ergonomics keyboard. Fuck...


10 Sep 2019, 20:03

I wouldn't throw around CTS as a diagnosis, it is more likely be a repetitive strain injury (RSI). Either way, visit a doctor to find out the issue. The solution is generally the same (improve posture and add stretches in regularly in you day). Different solutions work better for different people but you need to get used to it before you can tell if it is better or not. If I only used an Ergodox for 10 days then I would have though it was worse for my RSI pain. But after about a month it was quite a relief over using a normal layout.

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