Editor-in-Chief: Kenneth D. Candido, MD
Carpal tunnel syndrome is caused by compression of the median nerve under the transverse carpal ligament. We present a description of an ultrasound-guided (USG) percutaneous technique of the transcarpal tunnel and provide a discussion to the evidence in utilizing a minimally invasive technique as an alternative to open and endoscopic carpal tunnel release.
USG percutaneous transverse carpal ligament fenestration is a quick, and relatively simple office based treatment for carpal tunnel syndrome. The use of ultrasound provides satisfactory visualization for the procedure and requires very little time and effort for setup.
Here, in this case series, we detail the procedure and the results from our follow-up.
This report details a case series of 2 patients with confirmed electrodiagnostic findings of mild to severe median neuropathy at the wrist in a university hospital outpatient pain management center. USG percutaneous fenestration of the transcarpal ligament was performed under local anesthesia. Patients were followed up from 4 to 20 weeks.
It was found in patient 1, a greater than 60% reduction in pain at 20 weeks follow-up, and patient 2 had at least 50% reduction in pain at 8 weeks follow-up. Both patients had a minimum of 50% improvement in pain and sensory disturbance and without any adverse events.
The main advantage of USG transverse carpal ligament fenestration is that it is an office based procedure, requiring local anesthesia only. Minimally invasive USG transcarpal ligament fenestration, in select patients, may be an appropriate tool and even prove to be a surgery-sparing modality. The limitations of this study includes no case-control, small sample size, and the short term follow-up. In conclusion, this case series presents an alternative to a more invasive and costlier procedure including open and endoscopic carpal tunnel release, usually performed in a surgical suite. USG percutaneous transverse carpal ligament fenestration is a quick, and relatively simple office based treatment for carpal tunnel syndrome. The use of ultrasound provides satisfactory visualization for the procedure and requires very little time and effort for setup.
Key words: Ultrasound guided, transverse carpal ligament, fenestration, carpal tunnel syndrome