Carpal Tunnel Syndrome, a common cause of wrist and hand pain, is caused by wrist swelling in an anatomical area known as the Carpal Tunnel. The Carpal Tunnel is a gap in the carpal (wrist) bones through which muscles, blood vessels and nerves pass on their way to the hand from the forearm. Compression of the Median nerve causes altered sensation in the wrist and the fingers nearest the thumb, as well as the thumb itself.
Research studies have shown that the pressure within the Carpal Tunnel is increased if the wrist is held in a position of extension (such as typing at a keyboard) or flexion (when gripping tightly). These positions can make the symptoms of Carpal Tunnel Syndrome worse, so a wrist support is often recommended. In severe cases of Carpal Tunnel Syndrome surgery may be required.