When you begin your Physical Therapy program, our Physical Therapist will recommend that you change or stop the activities that might be causing your symptoms if at all possible. Avoid repetitive hand motions, heavy grasping, resting your palm against hard surfaces, and positioning or working with your wrist bent down and out.
We may have you wear a wrist brace to decrease the symptoms in the early stages of Guyon's canal syndrome. A brace keeps the wrist in a resting position (neither bent back nor bent down too far). It can be especially helpful for easing the numbness and pain felt at night because it can keep your hand from curling under as you sleep. The wrist brace can also be worn during the day to calm symptoms and rest the tissues within the canal.
We may also recommend anti-inflammatory medications. Common over-the-counter medications, such as ibuprofen and aspirin, can also help control the symptoms of Guyon's canal syndrome.
The main focus of your Humpal Physical Therapy & Sports Medicine Centers treatment is to reduce or eliminate the cause of pressure on the ulnar nerve. Our Physical Therapist may check your workstation and the way you do your work tasks. We will provide suggestions about the use of healthy body alignment and wrist positions, helpful exercises, and tips on how to prevent future problems.
Although the rate of recovery is different for each patient, if nonsurgical treatment is successful, you may see improvement in four to six weeks. We may recommend that you continue wearing your wrist splint at night to control symptoms and keep your wrist from curling under as you sleep. Try to do your activities using healthy body and wrist alignment. Limit activities that require repeated motions, heavy grasping, and pressure on the palm of the hand.
Your hand will be wrapped in a bulky dressing following surgery. When you begin your recovery, our Physical Therapist will advise you to take time during the day to support your arm with your hand elevated above the level of your heart. We will encourage you to move your fingers and thumb occasionally during the day. Keep the dressing on your hand until you return to the surgeon. Avoid getting the stitches wet. Your stitches will probably be removed 10 to 14 days after surgery.
Pain and numbness generally begin to improve after surgery, but you may have tenderness in the area of the incision for several months.
Although each patient recovers at a different rate, you will probably need to attend our occupational or Physical Therapy sessions for six to eight weeks, and you should expect full recovery to take several months. We will start by having you begin doing active hand movements and range-of-motion exercises. Our Physical Therapistss also use ice packs, soft-tissue massage, and hands-on stretching to help with your range of motion. When your stitches are removed, we may suggest that you start carefully strengthening your hand by squeezing and stretching special putty.
As you progress, our Physical Therapist will give you exercises to help strengthen and stabilize the muscles and joints in the hand. We use other exercises to improve fine motor control and dexterity. Some of the exercises you'll do are designed get your hand working in ways that are similar to your work tasks and sport activities.
Our Physical Therapist will help you find ways to do your tasks that don't put too much stress on your hand and wrist. Before your Physical Therapy sessions end, your Physical Therapist will teach you a number of ways to avoid future problems.
When your recovery is well under way, regular visits to Humpal Physical Therapy & Sports Medicine Centers will end. Although we will continue to be a resource, you will eventually be in charge of doing your exercises as part of an ongoing home program.
Humpal Physical Therapy & Sports Medicine Centers provides services for Physical Therapy in Corpus Christi.