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I have seen a couple of office workers today at Richmond Osteopaths with acute wrist pain. They have just come back from holiday and have resumed their crazy work schedules, both are young ladies between 30-40 years of age and most importantly they are computer based office workers.

Upon examination it was clear that they had carpal tunnel syndrome. Carpal tunnel syndrome is quite common and is caused by compression of a nerve that exits from the neck called the median nerve. This condition is typically associated with over use of the wrist such as by computer users, cashiers, musicians etc. However thyroid problems, diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis or pregnancy can cause carpal tunnel syndrome.

During a treatment it is important to treat the wrist to mobilise the joints and relax the tissues. The entire path of the median nerve needs to be treated as well as the neck being an additional important area of treatment. For both these ladies I gave them some postural exercise as well as advice on setting their desk up correctly (see Greg’s blog on work station assessment). They responded well to treatment but have required to take short breaks from their computer work during the day and stretch their neck, shoulders and wrist muscles in order to improve their posture and general circulation.