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Can Carpal Tunnel Syndrome Be Caused by a Car Accident?

Posted on December 14, 2023

Carpal tunnel syndrome usually affects individuals who participate in repetitive activities that place compression on the “carpal tunnel,” which is a portion of the lower wrist that houses the median nerve. Carpal tunnel syndrome can lead to various unwanted effects, including tingling and numbness in the hands, as well as hand weakness. But can carpal tunnel syndrome be caused by a car accident?

Carpal Tunnel Usually Happens Over Time

Carpal tunnel syndrome is caused (usually) by pressure placed on the median nerve, according to the Mayo Clinic. The “tunnel” of the carpal tunnel is actually just that – a tunnel that allows the median nerve to pass through from the arm, through the wrist area, and to the hand. If this nerve is compressed, it can lead to several severe side effects, including numbness, finger and hand weakness, and tingling.

In most cases, carpal tunnel syndrome is caused by continued pressure on the median nerve over time, usually from a person performing repetitive tasks. Carpal tunnel syndrome is considered a “repetitive stress injury.” Some of the most common types of activities that can lead to a person developing carpal tunnel syndrome include typing, shelf stocking, using various tools, and other tasks that require prolonged or repetitive flexing of the wrist.

Acute Trauma Could Cause Carpal Tunnel

Carpal tunnel syndrome could arise or be exasperated by a traumatic incident such as a vehicle accident. Data has shown that median nerve entrapment can occur as a result of a direct blow to the carpal tunnel, causing injury. Aside from the onset of carpal tunnel in this way, there are no differences between trauma-induced or regular onset CTS.

Vehicle accidents can cause a variety of types of trauma, particularly to the fingers, hands, and wrists. The force of a collision could lead to impacts with the vehicle dash, steering wheel, airbags, or other objects in the vehicle.

Treatment for Car Accident Carpal Tunnel Syndrome

There are various treatments available for CTS. A medical professional familiar with your particular injury should help guide you through possible treatment options, which could include:

  • A temporary decrease in the use of your hands and wrists
  • Applying cold packs
  • Using over-the-counter pain relievers
  • Wrist splinting
  • Corticosteroids
  • Surgery options

Proving Car Accident Carpal Tunnel

Determining whether or not a person developed CTS due to a car accident or as a result of something else can be challenging. Victims will need to work with a medical professional to establish a link between the onset of the carpal tunnel syndrome and the incident itself.

You can be sure that insurance carriers or a legal team for the at-fault driver will push back on having to pay compensation for CTS supposedly caused by a crash. They know this is a hard injury to prove in a vehicle accident claim.

Call a Car Accident Lawyer for Help

If you think your carpal tunnel was caused by a car accident, or if you’ve sustained any other injuries in a wreck caused by the actions of another driver, please call an attorney today. A car accident lawyer in Chicago can help review your case and assist you with recovering compensation for your losses.