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Thread: Carpal Tunnel at MCT completion.
01-13-12, 10:50 PM #1
Carpal Tunnel at MCT completion.
My son has tingling and numbness in both hands the thumb and 3 fingers when he completed the last long march at MCT. Doc said it is Carpal Tunnel. He was carrying a 60lb back pack which may be the cause since its in both hands exact same symptoms..
Has anyone had anything like this? What was the outcome.. Did you need surgery? I am so worried.
01-13-12, 10:59 PM #2
They should send him for tests to make sure that that's what it is. And if he does require surgery, I'm almost positive that they won't do both hands at the same time.....and surgery isn't a guarantee that it won't come back. For now, just take it one step at a time.
I had surgery on my right hand 6 and a half years ago. For me, the recovery time was about 6-8 weeks with some physical therapy. Knock on wood.....I haven't had any problems since.
01-13-12, 11:05 PM #3
I have had both hands (Car-pol tunnel) done, first left then the right.
I received relief that very night, but let me caution you here.
I have also had Cervical fusion on C-5-6-7 in 1986, the pain and numbness your son has is the exact pain I had before the fusion.
A CT scan or MRI or Contrast MRI will tell the whole story, tell him to be persistent.
01-13-12, 11:51 PM #4
He Will Probably Wind Up Getting Surgery And Berecovering For About 6 Weeks< Thats How Long It Took My Ex Wife To Recover And She Feels Great Now No Problem But It Will Be Up To The Navy Doctors.
My Thoughts And Prayers To Your Son
Stephen Doc Hansen Hm3 Fmf
01-13-12, 11:58 PM #5
Before they electrocute him testing for carpal tunnel (BTDT), have them take x-rays of his upper chest and look for bi-lateral cervical ribs. These are little nubs of a rib trying to grow out of the C-7 vertebrae.
This can cause thoracic outlet syndrome. See: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thoracic_outlet_syndrome
If he has cervical ribs, they should conduct tests for TOS before proceeding to any carpal tunnel tests.
I have bi-lat cervical ribs and bi-lat TOS. However, the TOS only becomes an issue for me when I'm in a certain weight range. When I was younger, and lifted weights often, the muscle mass increase caused trouble.
Your son's symptoms combined with a possible cause sound a lot more like TOS to me.
I was not diagnosed with TOS until I had retired from the military, but it had little effect on my police career as long as I watched the weight lifting or kept my overall weight below a certain level.
Numbness in his thumb, index finger, middle finger, and some in the ring finger indicate involvement of the radial nerve, which runs along the outer part of the forearm. Carpal tunnel tends to affect nerves on the inner part of the forearm more often. TOS can cause pinching of the radial nerve branches in the brachial plexus nerve bundle in the neck.
01-14-12, 12:07 AM #6
Thank You Christopher For Pointing Out That Info I Overlooked That Shame On Me.
Semper Fi My Brother
Stephen Doc Hansen Hm3 Fmf
01-14-12, 12:45 AM #7
How do they cure TOS?
Also can he ask for the Xrays? What are his rights?
My bigger is that he will get discharged because of this his MOS is 60xx
Thanks for all the quick responses.
01-14-12, 09:29 AM #8
Your son should go to sick call and tell the doctor that his aunt, also a doctor, firmly believes TOS is a stronger candidate and that he should be tested for that first. They can always test for carpal tunnel later to rule out if they absolutely must.
I was diagnosed by a retired US Army physician's assistant from x-rays, palpation, and physical manipulation of my arms. All later confirmed by a neurologist who did the same things. They did do carpal tunnel tests to rule out (it was) after I continued to complain about pain and numbness in my wrists and hands only. Previously the numbness extended from my shoulder downward. However, nerve tests showed it was just another manifestation of TOS.
Your son may not even have full blown TOS. Just the pinching of the brachial plexus nerve bundle under a 60-70lb pack on top of a 5'4" body might do it. I know a lot of guys arms "went to sleep" carrying weight like that, mine did. Everyone just wrote it off to the pack straps pinching a nerve in the neck - which essentially probably was the problem in 95% of the Marines. No one heard of carpal tunnel in those days.
If they determine the cause was a simple nerve pinching between pack straps and the brachial plexus, I don't see why he would be discharged as a 60XX. Maybe as an 03XX, if the problem continued, he would be switched to another MOS. However, if he has problems keeping his arms over his head for only short periods of time before the pain and numbness come on, he might be looking at a new MOS or even a medical board for possible discharge. I can't say for certain.
Usually, with TOS, the treatment is to avoid whatever causes onset. In my case, keeping my weight down. I don't lift weights any longer, so it's a matter of keeping my fat body as light as possible. I still have occasional flareups if I sleep "funny," but Motrin and "shaking it out" usually fixes the problem for the time being.
They avoid surgery with TOS as much as possible because of the involvement of the brachial plexus, and it's pretty complicated surgery messing around up in the neck and upper shoulder area. Lots of important things to screw up accidentally in there. Primarily they stick with having you avoid what causes onset of pain, and/or give physical therapy.
01-14-12, 09:39 AM #9
The strap's on the pack?
Sound's like the strap's pinched or did something to the nerves. If the strap's aren't placed properly, and, if the pack isn't positioned properly, with proper weight distribution, and/or carried properly, it can cause problems. I've seen it happen in Boy Scout's year's ago with a couple of the guy's, and we were Eagle/Star Scout's.
01-14-12, 09:39 AM #10
01-14-12, 10:17 AM #11
It's an easy thing to miss, Doc. Everyone is so wrapped up these days with carpal tunnel when hand and wrist pain is involved.
Since I initially presented with pain and numbness from the shoulder down, the PA (a retired Army PA) immediately suspected TOS and a cervical rib. He'd see this problem a lot dealing with infantrymen. Sure enough, he was 100% right.
A few months later, I was having terrible pain and numbness in my wrists and hands only. The PA was pretty certain it was my TOS acting up in a different way, but had to rule out carpal tunnel. It was and the neurologist also confirmed the TOS diagnosis.
To this day my TOS acts up differently all of the time. It depends on how exactly nerves are being pinched in the thoracic outlet.
My cross to bear.
01-14-12, 11:37 AM #12
My son says he has no pain with the symptoms. Just feels weird he said, like numbness and tingling, so hopefully it will not be serious.
I neglected to mention they have given him arm splints to wear and prescription of no heavy lifting, no pushups, general rest.
I really, really appreciate the replies and prayers.
01-14-12, 02:20 PM #13
Yes I had both hands that had it, and tell him to get it fixed now and don't wait!!!
If he waits for it to get better it wont. In fact it can become paralyzing to his hands to close his hands up and rendering them useless to use his hands at all.
The surgery is simple and healing time is one month at the most and there is no P.T. that he need to go for cause all he has to do is start squeezing a tennis ball gently at first and work up to hard grasping of the ball harder..
Tell him to hurry and get it done before he loses the use of his hands...
Sgt. William Pilgrim Jr.
01-14-12, 02:24 PM #14
01-14-12, 03:37 PM #15
Prayers Brothers. The effect always has a cause. I have watched the carpal tunnel surgery being performed, and I suggested chiropractic care for several reasons. The young Marine's symptoms started after heavy pressure on his shoulders by packs, equipment, etc., which can cause pressure on the brachial plexus, which in turn causes the symptoms commonly associated with carpal tunnel syndrome. Most young healthy people don't get these symptoms. Chiropractic care helps greatly with some things, and it is non-invasive, conservative and cost effective.
Prayers to all my brothers and sisters with pain,
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