Carpal tunnel syndrome – Kinesiology tape

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What is carpal tunnel syndrome?

Carpal tunnel syndrome is one of the most common compression syndromes of the arm nerves and can be treated with kinesiology tape. The cause of carpal tunnel syndrome is chronic pressure on the median nerve in the carpal tunnel. This is a narrow passage in the hand joint for nerves and flexor tendons that run from the forearm to the hand. The nerve has a soft structure and is sensitive to pressure. The swelling causes several symptoms in the carpal tunnel. This is the reason it is called carpal tunnel syndrome.

What causes carpal tunnel?

  • Swelling caused by a unilateral overload of the hand joint.
  • Swelling caused by an accident or fall on the wrist.
  • Swelling from rheumatic diseases.
  • If someone retains fluids, for example during pregnancy or with certain conditions such as an underactive thyroid.
  • Swelling caused by obesity or diabetes.

Carpal tunnel syndrome symptoms

  • Dull, tingling, and painful sensation in the hand and fingers.
  • Decreased strength in the fingers.
  • Complaints often increase in the night.
  • Alternating numbness in the tips of the thumb, index, and middle fingers.
  • Tingling feeling in the skin around the median nerve.
  • Pain in the hand joint.

Complaints can also arise from, for example, a neck hernia or wear and tear of the cervical vertebrae. A therapist should investigate and determine this, and the treatment plan should be adjusted accordingly.

How to tape carpal tunnel?

When carpal tunnel syndrome is recognized at an early stage, it is possible to tape it with CureTape® kinesiology tape. A combination of muscle tape and ligament tape is used for the construction of the tape. More information about these taping techniques can be found in our MTC handbook kinesiology taping. In an acute stage, taping can also be used as pain relief.

In this example, a blue I-tape is used to relieve (sedate) the forearm flexors (m. palmaris longus).

Instruction Video: taping for Carpal Tunnel Syndrome

How to treat carpal tunnel syndrome with kinesiology tape?

  1. Measure the I-tape in a stretched position, taking the tape construction that starts on the back of the hand into account. Then cut two finger recesses from the I-tape as shown.
  2. Tear the release paper in half at the finger recesses and fold the paper in half on both sides. Slide the middle and ring fingers through the recesses and place the base on the back of the hand while holding it in a neutral position.
  3. Rotate the hand outward, bringing the hand into dorsiflexion.
  4. Apply the detonating tape with a slight stretch toward the medial epicondyle humeri over the forearm flexors and rub it on. Then apply the last 5 cm of the tape without stretch.
  5. Then apply the black tape to create space by relieving the pressure on the hand joint with a ligament technique.
  6. Apply the tape to the center of the wrist joint with maximum stretch, ensuring that the ends of the tape are applied very gently and without extra stretch, otherwise tingling may occur.

Tip: Because the tape is applied over the hand, it can come off earlier due to sweat or use. Use CureTape® Sports (as in the attached example) so that the tape application lasts longer.

Please note that applications provided on our website are not clinically proven. All mentioned applications are based on extensive evaluation and case studies with licensed physiotherapists and/or other health professionals.

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