Efficacy of Steroid Injection Examined in Carpal Tunnel

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Participants were randomized to either local steroid injection or nocturnal wrist splinting for treatment of CTS.
Participants were randomized to either local steroid injection or nocturnal wrist splinting for treatment of CTS.

HealthDay News — Local steroid injection is effective for treatment of carpal tunnel syndrome (CTS) and improves hand function, according to a small study published online September 13 in the International Journal of Rheumatic Diseases.

Ho So, from Kwong Wah Hospital in Hong Kong, and colleagues randomized patients to either treatment with local steroid injection (25 participants) or nocturnal wrist splinting (25 participants) for treatment of CTS.

The researchers found that 4 weeks after treatment there was significant improvement in Boston Carpal Tunnel Questionnaire (BCTQ) scores for both groups. However, there was no statistically significant difference in BCTQ scores between the two groups after treatment. Only the steroid group saw improvement in finger dexterity. The steroid group also had higher patient satisfaction scores and, as a group, the patients took fewer painkillers after treatment. 

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"Although local steroid injection and nocturnal wrist splinting were equally effective in the treatment of patients with CTS, only the former improved objective hand function," the authors write.

Abstract
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