Secret Dangers of Successful Carpal Tunnel Surgery

Surgery should be a last ditch effort to help end Carpal Tunnel Symptoms. Ideally it is only recommended when all the other common methods fail. (And they generally will.)

So what happens after you get a ‘successful’ procedure like Carpal Tunnel Release Surgery? This is a great question to ask BEFORE you get the surgery. Before I reveal the two secret dangers of a ‘successful’ surgery, let’s talk about the dangers one must avoid before one can get close to what doctors call a successful surgery.

The possible complications of Carpal Tunnel Surgery are:

  • An unsuccessful surgery, meaning it flat out doesn’t work.
  • Infection
  • Increased pain
  • Partial or complete severing of the median nerve
  • Scar tissue build-up creating more pain and symptoms, also ‘requiring’ a second surgery.

Let’s say that you had a successful surgery. The doctor didn’t accidentally cut or completely sever you median nerve. The ligament was accurately severed and more space was created in the carpal tunnel.

The first secret danger is that it can take months to recover from the surgery, and you have to be very careful not to re-injure yourself.

The body does not like sharp objects cutting and ripping on its tissue. It responds in a variety of ways that occur as pain. This includes a process of Inflammation, increased pain, a limitation on how much strength the nervous system will allow, etc.

You were already hurting before, and surgery causes physical damage to an already unhappy structure. It can take people months even a year to recover just from the surgery. And that’s assuming it was a ‘good’ surgery and not a ‘bad’ surgery that messed up more than it was supposed to.

So let’s say you had a good surgery. Let’s say it takes you 3 months to fully recover. And then you have to slowly start stretching and building up your strength, being careful not to re-injure yourself. That’s a lot of time, and a lot of work, for a simple procedure that was supposed to save you from all the pain and numbness you were having. With surgery, you now have to deal with the trauma of surgery too.

The second secret danger is that the carpal tunnel may not have been the source of the problem.

While your carpal tunnel now may have more space and the nerve is no longer so compressed, it is VERY likely to turn out that the carpal tunnel wasn’t the spot where all the symptoms were coming from. Many people experience a decrease in symptoms for some period of time, weeks or a year or more. And then symptoms come back.

Doctors will just say you need a second surgery, but it is a sure thing that some or all of your numbness was coming from up at the neck and the front of the chest and shoulder. The surgery itself was a success, but it targeted the wrong spot. Oops.

Surgery fails to take into account that there is a larger Carpal Tunnel Dynamic leading to the symptoms you are having, and just cutting on one spot will not beneficially affect that dynamic. Find out more about the dynamic of Carpal Tunnel Syndrome.

There are more secret dangers, of course. And more importantly, there are reliable methods to reverse your carpal tunnel symptoms without surgery. In far less time than it would take to recover from carpal tunnel surgery.

If you would like to avoid Carpal Tunnel Surgery, get The Carpal Tunnel Treatment That Works

Joshua Tucker, B.A, C.M.T is The Tendonitis Expert. He educates, leads workshops, and trains individuals how to ELIMINATE their Tendonitis related issues like Tennis Elbow, Carpal Tunnel, Plantar Fasciitis, and Wrist Tendonitis. Joshua says “When you have tried all the usual options and they have failed, it’s still not to late to become pain free. It’s also never too early to start.” For more of the RIGHT information about how to Eliminate your Tendonitis, no matter how bad it is or how long you’ve had it, visit

Randy Rasa

Randy is an engineer/programmer/web designer who has suffered from repetitive strain injury off and on for over a decade.


  1. not thrilled with an advertisement posing as a blog post…

  2. This blog post was contributed by someone knowledgeable on the topic, and it seems like a useful and informative article. The post contains a link back to the author’s site (where, yes, he’s selling something). I don’t see a problem with that.

  3. for the post to be truly informative, or the website the author refers to to be informative, there needs to be some explanation of why this person’s treatment “works”. I’ve been through all the hoops of RSI and I find it hard to believe there is a one size fits all approach for everyone. If this person truly has something that works, there should be some way to preview the information in some way before buying.

  4. Agreed. If someone’s offering a “cure” without any evidence, or asking you to pay first and ask questions later, then you’re right to be wary.

    But the the upshot of the article itself, that surgery is not necessarily the best choice in all situations, is, I think, solid advice.

  5. I had 2 surgeries for carpel tunnel syndrome on the same hand a year apart and my hand is worse than ever, it is weaker and more numb and I have tried braces and different therapies. If I had known I would never had the surgery at all. Surgery is not always the answer.

  6. I have just been told I am to have surgery on both wrists for carpal tunnel release.I have had nerve conduction tests that show problems with both wrists.
    All doctors I have spoken to seem to dismiss the fact that I have horrendous pain and weakness in my right shoulder, pain in my upper right arm,a tight,downward pulling feeling at the front of my right shoulder underneath my collar bone area, my neck feels like my head is too heavy, a sharp pain in the right side of my neck and the feeling that my face on the right side is being pulled down.

  7. response to Helen get lots of consults because if you have surgery some times you end up with a condition thats worse as in my case and the pain is also worse so check out all your options.medicine is not a perfect science you have to be your own advocate good luck

  8. Go see an osteopathic doctor who specializes in Neuromuscular medicine and Osteopathic Manipulative Medicine. They routinely and successfully treat patients with CTS. They will only recommend surgery if your thumb adductor is shrivelling up or if your symptoms get worse during treatment. Many patients have canceled scheduled surgeries with a doctor I am studying with after being treated by him.

  9. I have dequervain’s disease and surgery release first dorsal compartment, since my surgery complications has worsen pain increase,Inflammation, numbness, nerve damage rt and lt hand scar tissue requring second surgery,weakness,unable to grip objects, cold sensitivity. I don’t think surgery is the answer. Can care for myself with asst. What is the danger of a second surgery? Is dequervain’s and carparl tunnel the same thing?

  10. I have had injuires to my right hand (accidental of course) in the past. I also am active and I am a musician. I beleive that I do have carpal tunnel. So many people reccomend surgeory. I have never had it but when I go see an acupuncturist I feel much better. My acupuncturist says I should go to a neurologist and get a EKG test. Any advice?

  11. I have been going to PT for Carpal Tunnel in my dominant hand. I have also been going to a chiropractor at the same time. She has been performing Graston on my right arm and hand. It has definitley decreased the pain there but the numbness has not left as yet. I can’t stand the fact that two fingers are numb and they may never ever get better. It effects writing, buttoning, and cooking (especially slicing). I also use the tens machine there and warm compresses after she has worked on it. That feels wonderful for 15 mintues ! It is a EMG test not an EKG. Had it and it just confirms if you have CTS. Acupuncture can’t hurt…I may try that next! No surgery! Not conclusive enough!

  12. Carpal…I am a cake decoration for 6 plus years at a big chain store…. 2 to 11 shift standing and decoration cakes one after another…. right hand, carpal, surgery done a few years ago… return to work…left hand carpal done a few months ago…. problem!!!! pain, numbness, tingling, fumbling, up nights, taking vicodine for the pain…really a mess… I am still struggling for a living….am about to take further steps with my employer.

  13. my had surgery in both hands who made a small cut at the wrist she fine not a big deal do your homework and find a good doctor

  14. Hello my name is Linda, I have had surgery, splints,meds, shots, looking at mabe 2 more surgeries, I have wrist pain in the left and right hands, I am now in pain mangment but nothing is working for me it effects my daily living. The docotor is up set because I am not better and thinks i have something to gain or it’s just in my mind. But only God no what I have been through. The 1st sugery did me know good my condotion has worsen… I have nerve damage,numbness,can’t left havey ojects

  15. I suggest that everyone who has been diagnosed with carpal tunnel also sees a chiropractor. My own chiropractor said that since I have been diagnosed with carpal tunnel, and I have been seeing him for a year, and the adjustments I’m getting, which are awesome for the headaches I used to get and work really well for me, but don’t have any affect on my carpal tunnel at all, that I probably have true carpal tunnel, and that I should go ahead and have the surgery because that will probably help then.

  16. I had ctr surgery over 20 years ago on both my hands. I couldn’t hold a cup, cut my food or help tie my kids shoes.. have had great success with the surgery. BUT after 20+ years am now having trouble with both my hands going to sleep again. Is it the same, scar tissue or something else? I can’t get a full nights sleep.. but I don’t have the shooting pain all the way down my arm.. let’s see what dr says.

  17. I had carpal tunnel surgery over tens years ago. My left hand is starting to bother me again. I mean with surgery it lasted a long time i have not told my doctor yet that my hand is bothering me again. I quess i should so i can get a diagnosed on it.

  18. I had bilateral carpal tunnel surgery 5 years ago, things have been great since.I watched the surgery and was shown how tight the ligaments were, no wonder I had problems. The surgeon said there is a 30% chance of it reoccuring at sometime. I was just glad to get it done. 3 months after the carpal tunnel surgery i had acromioclavicular excision and subacromial decompression surgery in my right shoulder.It turned out i had a diseased bone in my shoulder.

  19. I feel bad about for all the people who had the surgery and it failed. Alot of Doctors offer the surgery, but are not fully quilified. There are alot of different proceedures and it depends on what seminar the Doctor recently attended. The Doctor I found told me that he does alot of re-do’s from other Doctors who didn’t do the surgery correctly. My Doctor actualy gave me a 3 1/2 inch incesion from my wrist to the mid palm. There was no pain after following the Doctors directions. I was out of work for 6 weeks. The surgery was over a year now and my hand works GREAT!. I am a drummer and my hand does not go numb, it does not tingle and I do not lose any strenth. My Doctor is Dr.Weibel San Jose Ca

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