Carpal Tunnel Hand Surgery on Right and Left Hands didn't work

by Debbie
(Tucson, AZ)

I had Carpal Tunnel Syndrome Surgery on the right hand in November 09 and on the left in December 09.

In January and February of 2010 I did hand therapy for approx. 6 weeks (2 X per week). I still did not receive any relief in fact the pain was much worse than before the surgery and numbness was still present.

In April of 2010 I had my 1st nerve conduction test which showed that the nerves were still compressed in both hands. The test was repeated in June 2010 with the same results.

In July 2010 I had the right had re-surgeried and a trigger thumb released. I went to hand therapy in August and September of 2010. My right hand is now worse than ever. I have the feeling of a terrible toothache in both palms all the time with very sharp (intermittent)shooting pains that take your breath away.

My left thumb is also a trigger and is frozen 95% of the time in extension. The left hand cannot undergo re-surgery since the right hand has not recovered.

I cannot open cans, jars, door knobs, cut meat, etc, etc. I tried to get Mayo to evaluate since I believe something else may be going on but they turned me down saying that any additional treatment or surgery at this time would further diminish the long term use of my hands.

I have started acupunture today in the hopes that it will reduce the level of pain to tolerable. I currently only get 3-5 hrs sleep per night and not continuous due to the pain.

Any suggestions?


Joshua Answers:

Suggestions, yes!

1. NO MORE SURGERY! Causing more damage and trauma to your wrist/hand/lower arm is probably not a good idea. Your nervous system is freaked out enough as it is.

2. Consider the possibility that that numbness etc
may be coming from tight short muscles stepping on the hose of the nerve up at the front of the neck.

3. Consider the possibility that you may be nutritionally deficient. Magnesium for Tendonitis being a big one.

4. Learn How To Reduce Inflammation. And start doing that activity TODAY!

5. If you haven't already, you may want to get my The Carpal Tunnel Treatment That Works DVD and Quick Start Companion ebook that comes with it.

You're in a pretty acute situation. You had Tendonitis with some specific aspects of a Carpal Tunnel Syndrome. You also had an advanced Pain Causing Dynamic and highly active Process of Inflammation.

See: What Is Tendonitis?

Multiple surgeries have made all that worse. Heightened all those dynamics and it's obviously negatively affecting your structure, (and your ability to sleep, which is necessary for healing).

Unfortunately, it's unlikely that the surgeries were even targeting the right spot/problem area. But they damaged you nonetheless.

You need to attack (in a good way) the ecology of your arms. Right now it's tight, constrictive, irritable, painful, etc. And that's a feedback loop that makes things tighter, more irritable, more painful, etc.

Please reply using the comment link below. Do not submit a new submission to answer/reply, it's too hard for me to find where it's supposed to go.

And, comments have a 3,000 character limit so you may have to comment twice.

Joshua Tucker, B.A., C.M.T.
The Tendonitis Expert

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Comments for Carpal Tunnel Hand Surgery on Right and Left Hands didn't work

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Aug 16, 2016
I've tried everything
by: Yvonne

Well my orthopedic doctor told me there is nothing more he can do for me cause I have severe carpal tunnel syndrome and the surgeries I had in April 2015 for left hand and August 2015 for right hand didn't work.

He even put a wrap around my nerve in my right wrist when he did surgery last year in August, I am wondering if the wrap is still in my wrist, my hands, forearm and elbows hurt me everyday of my life, I did physical therapy and that didn't help neither.

I can't work and I don't know if I can get social security disability for having severe carpal tunnel syndrome.

I also saw a nerve doctor and he said he couldn't help me, what advice can you give me please and thank you.


Joshua Comments:

Yes, unfortunately, surgery is the last option in a doctor's very limited bag of tools.

And when surgery doesn't magically fix a problem, there is nothing else they can do for you.

And there's no money back guarantee on surgery (or any doctor visit or failed prescription).

What kind of wrap was put around the nerve during surgery?

Again, my advice is to get the Carpal Tunnel Treatment That Works program. You need a complete plan of attack. Trying 'this' or 'that' isn't going to get you the results you're looking for.

Aug 15, 2016
I need help
by: Yvonne

I had carpal tunnel surgery in 1987 in my right hand and then I got carpal tunnel in my left hand and had surgery in 2012.

Then it came back in both hands again and I had surgery in April 2015 on my left hand and in August 2015 on my right hand, had a emg done in February 2016.

I was told I have severe carpal tunnel syndrome in both hands and both elbows and they can't do anymore surgeries in my hands and they won't do surgery in my elbows cause my doctor said it won't get better.

I go to pain management and I take pain medication and it still doesn't stop the pain, I can't take gabapin cause I am allergic to it and Lyrica I can't take, I can't cook and clean nor have a life cause my hands and elbows hurt me 24/7 and I can't work and I don't know what to do anymore.

Can someone please help me?


Joshua Comments:

Hi Yyvonne.

I'm sorry your doctors have put you through all that.

Did they ever have you take vitamin B6 to see if insufficiency/deficiency was causing your CTS symptoms?

See: Carpal Tunnel And Vitamin B6

Surgery definitely didn't help anything, and has very likely made things worse.

Having said that, that just means that you now have to work harder to get out of pain and to get back to regular function.

It's serious now. I suggest The Carpal Tunnel Treatment That Works program. You need complete plan of's too late for tips and tricks.

Everything you should have done pre-surgery is what you need to do now post-surgery.

And the program will help the elbows too.

May 21, 2016
If I could go back in time, I'd never have surgery!
by: Rebecca

I Worked in medical scheduling for 10 years, typing 8 hours a day, I started having pain, tingling and numbness, was diagnosed with CTS. Had bilat endoscopic carpal tunnel release surgery 2013, during surgery I felt what I would call "an electric shock" go up my Rt arm which jolted me out of sedation.

I returned to work 4 weeks after surgery that night both hands swelled to where I couldn't bend my fingers and pain was excruciating.

I was then given a cortisone injection, put to part-time work, physical therapy, and anti-inflammatory meds.

Surgery didn't relieve any of my symptoms and I have developed more problems, I lost almost all strength in my hands and couldn't even pull my own clothes on, my arms feel like pins and needles constantly,

I get shooting pain and now pain behind my elbows, swelling constantly, I've developed thickness on top of both arms and get tingling in my shoulder.

I can't perform daily task like pulling clothes out of the washer, or pulling on pants, cutting vegetables, lifting pots, I can't do any exercise like push ups as I can't put any pressure on the palm of my hand, I can't pick up my kids using my hands, I have to use my arms, I can let my arms rest on an arm rest or they'll start tingling and hurting.

The doctors have said they don't know what to do with me, some say I should have never had surgery as every nerve test was negative, some say I need another surgery, some say it's scar tissue, I've been prescribed medications that caused me memory loss, I've been told I just need to apply for disabilty and do pain management with meds, basically there's no hope to find out what's going on with me and no relief on the horizon.

I don't want to just put a bandaid on the issues and never take care of the true problem.

Not only has CTS damaged me physically, but financially since I haven't been able to work has cause huge financial issues, emotional issues, health issues, relationship issues because people can't see the pain you're in, its hard for them to understand.
I would highly suggest if considering surgery to try everything else first, change the job or activites you're doing, try any and all alternatives because surgery in opinion causes more problems than benefits.

Everyone I've talked to who used to tell their surgery was a success are now faced with the return of their symptoms and are being told they'll need surgery again.


Joshua Comments:

Hi Rebecca.

How are you doing now, it's been a few months since you posted this?

Hopefully surgery didn't hit/nick a nerve. But if you're having problems on both sides still, then that points more to the initial causes of the symptoms that surgery A. ignored but B. made worse, continuing to get/make things worse.

If all your nerve conduction tests were negative, or at least, if your doctors didn't accurately identify where the compression of the nerve was at, then they were just fishing with the surgery, hoping for some good result.

Bilateral carpal tunnel symptoms are from issue up at the neck and/or nutritional insufficiency (which your doctors never inquired into, as it's not part of 'the standard of care').

For instance, Inflammation Causes Vitamin B6 Deficiency

Tendonitis (same factors as CTS) is made up of predictable factors.

You're stuck in chronic inflammation process, nutritional lack, and muscle/connective tissue tightness.

Your best option now is to do the necessary work to reverse all those factors and try to bring your body back into working order. That's to lower pain levels. Once pain levels are down (first priority) then we can inquire into other aspects of the original symptoms.

See Related: Two Months After Mini Release Carpal Tunnel Surgery No Improvement

See Related: Recent Carpal tunnel Surgery Still Have Weakness Pain And A Grinding Feeling

Nov 24, 2014
third time for carpal tunnel surgery both hands
by: Anonymous

I first had carpal tunnel surgery in 1993, I guess I had I had it pretty bad.

I had open hand releases, in both hands. It took almost a year to recover. Both hands were in bad shape. I did recover. Went back to work.

About ten years later I had the same symptoms again, again sent though all the testing, again n had CTS, (second time)OK had the survey again (again had open release). H

Here it it is 13 years later, and guess what, yep again Carpal tunnel, in both hands for the third time!

Again had to have a release. Just had my left hand done, waiting gfor it to heal up, so I can get the right hand done. Here's my question, why do I keep getting CTS?

Any help would be greatly appreciated.



Joshua Comments:

Hi Anonymous.

You didn't leave your name, email, nor check the notifications box, so you may or not find this response, so I'll keep it short.

You keep 'getting' carpal tunnel syndrome symptoms because surgery doesn't get rid of the factors that cause carpal tunnel syndrome.

It took 10 years, but the tight muscles and connective tissue kept getting tighter, the process of inflammation stayed in place, and the nutrittional insufficiency/deficiency stayed in place got worse.

Also, I'm curious. If the first two surgeries didn't fix it (and the first one took A YEAR to recover from???), why would you do it a third time?

Surgery injures the body, and the body doesn't like that.

Some thoughts on recovery from surgery: Carpal Tunnel Surgery Recovery

Jan 26, 2014
What now???? Pain is worse after Carpal Tunnel Surgery
by: Kel

I suffered with Carpel tunnel for 14 years before surgery. Right- March 2012 and Left- August 2012.

Recovery was slow and now in the past year it has just gotten a lot worse. Numerous of different tests done to rule out other things, But nerve conduction tests still Carpel tunnel!

This is now interfering with the quality of life! Im in constant pain, can never sleep, cannot carry any thing heavy. Its also getting in the way of my job.

I feel like I have no strength, my hands are so weak and numbness and shooting pains are so unbearable at times im in tears! Basic things like even going shopping and grabbing something off the shelf I drop because I cant feel how firm a grip I have.

Its starting to get embarrassing and as its getting worse its hard to hide from others...

I have tried every medication prescribed to help with the pain and try to get some sleep and nothing works. I wear splints to bed and get physio but it doesn't really help. Im at my wits end as I can no longer drive any further than 20 mins as my hands turn to constant pins and needles and pain on the steeling wheel if I drive longer than that.

Doctor has told me to give up my job(Childcare) and have the surgery again! Well if it didn't work the first time why have it again right!!!!

Well doc said maybe I just have to have hope 2nd time around that it will work... Confused.. what next? I don't wanna be in pain anymore. I have dreams in years to come that I will slowly lose the use of my hands... Any suggestions appreciated.


Joshua Comments:

Hi Kel.

Get The Carpal Tunnel Treatment That Works Dvd and companion ebook.

You need a complete plan that deals with the actual reasons that you have the symptoms you have, and you need to get to work. (That's my opinion, of course.)

Also, frankly, you may want to consider never never ever ever seeing that doctor again. 'HOPE' that a second invasive flesh cutting surgery helps? Surgery when the surgeon has no idea why you're having problems?

That's insanity. (That's why I often don't have nice things to say about much of the hospital medicine industry.) didn't deal with the original causes of your symptoms, and you still have those original causes slowly getting worse -and- aggravation of those causes by the insult and injury caused by surgery.

Obviously I haven't seen you in person, but in general, I at this point see no reason why you can't at worst reduce your symptoms by 50%+ and at best become pain free. -IF- you reverse the factors that are causing the pain/problem.

Jan 24, 2013
Hurting over a year after bilateral carpal tunnel and cubital tunnel surgeries
by: Gloria

I had bilateral carpal tunnel and cubital tunnel surgeries. The first was in May 2011 (left) and November 2011 (right). Two different surgeons and two different procedures. The first was open and the second one was micorscopic surgery.

I had four nerve study conduction and each one got worse each time performed . I have nerve now that does not respond and are still severe.

The results is nothing more they can do for me. I am still swelling at bilateral wrist and elbows. The pain is so severe, that I have to soak my hand in hot water to comfort the pain. I can not stand coldness. Unable to sit in an air condition rooms or use ice pack for the swelling. I was diagnose with peripheral neuropathy, tunnel. This is a new condition after the surgeries.

I am still diagnose with cubital tunnel and carpal tunnel in both extremities after the NCS. I had therapy on both upper extremities and the right hand is permanently numb. I need to watch when I cook or I would not know if I get burn.

Both extremities are painful from my finger tips to my shoulders. I am now attending pain management and is currently taking Gabapentin 3 times a day @ 300 mg a tablet. I also am taking 800 mg of ibuprofen for the swelling. None of these medications seems to help.


Joshua Comments:

Hi Gloria.

I'm sorry to hear that. Sounds like the surgeon didn't help and even made things worse. That's unfortunate but unsurprising. And unfortunately, surgeons don't offer a money back guarantee.

Did they nick or cut your nerves?
Did they ever talk about nutrition and how it plays a role before surgery?

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