Carpal tunnel commonly causes numbness in the hand as well as pain. The numbness often occurs at night and can wake people from their sleep. Western medicine has the explanation that this is due to the hands being held in a flexed position during sleep. However other researchers have found that many people sleep with their hands in this position and have no numbness. Chinese medicine has a different theory.
The liver is the organ that stores blood and at night the blood should flow back to the liver to regenerate and rejuvenate. When liver blood is healthy and ample it can nourish the ligaments and tendons including that of the hands.
Heiko Lade talks about carpal tunnel on Radio Kidnappers.
In severe cases of carpal tunnel, the fleshy area of the thenar eminence, that is the area near the thumb on the palm of the hand can even become wasted. There is a saying in Chinese medicine that says “When there is not energy and blood, the flesh can’t be nourished and hence will wither.”
Researchers Khosrawi and Moghtaderi of the School of Medicine at the Isfahan University of Medical Sciences found that as few as eight acupuncture sessions in four week period could improve the symptoms of carpal tunnel.
Dianne Joswick, Licensed acupuncture practitioner in California, says that acupuncture when used for carpal tunnel can remove the need for surgery and corticosteroids. In fact many Acupuncture NZ members commonly treat carpal tunnel. Unfortunately carpal tunnel is a grey area as far as ACC is concerned because it is often regarded as a slow onset problem and not as a result of an injury. Mr Alan Jansson, a specialist of traditional Japanese acupuncture on Queensland’s Gold Coast says “Ideally patients should try the acupuncture option for carpal tunnel first before resorting to the surgery option. I have seen too many patients with post-surgery carpal tunnel complications which could have been avoided had they used acupuncture as the first option“.
In the United States, a well-known Sports Medicine Acupuncturist Specialist, Matt Callison uses a unique wrist motor point in the treatment of carpal tunnel. Matt Callison regularly travels to New Zealand to teach his specialized techniques of Sports Medicine Acupuncture.
In China it is common to prescribe Chinese herbs in the treatment of carpal tunnel because specific herbs have the function to improve the equality of the liver blood and other herbs to nourish ligaments and tendons. Some Chinese herbalists advocate the most important thing to consider in the treatment of carpal tunnel is improving the sleep of the patient, so that the liver can then regenerate the blood to replenish the weakened hand.