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Foxj66

Carpal Tunnel and shooting

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After recently confirming the doctors diagnosis of carpal tunnel with an EMG I have been wonder how the potential and likely surgery may affect my shooting.

 

Have any of you guys had the surgery and if so were you able to return to the same level of shooting (really wanting to know for the guys that practice/dry fire a lot)

 

Prior to the last few weeks when I finally went to the doctor for my hands going numb all the time and hurting I would typically shoot 3-5 times a week and dry fire around 3 hours a week. I don't know that it caused my problems but I am concerned if I will be able to get back to my current level (GM) and improve or at least maintain my skill level.

 

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After recently confirming the doctors diagnosis of carpal tunnel with an EMG I have been wonder how the potential and likely surgery may affect my shooting.
 
Have any of you guys had the surgery and if so were you able to return to the same level of shooting (really wanting to know for the guys that practice/dry fire a lot)
 
Prior to the last few weeks when I finally went to the doctor for my hands going numb all the time and hurting I would typically shoot 3-5 times a week and dry fire around 3 hours a week. I don't know that it caused my problems but I am concerned if I will be able to get back to my current level (GM) and improve or at least maintain my skill level.
 

I had carpal tunnel surgery 10 years ago.

It didn’t affect me.

I shoot pistols from my 22 LR up to the Smith 500.

Here’s what I shot today:

Ruger Alaskan 454
Smith 629 44 3”

Fast fire with both guns:
Buffalo Bore 360 gr 454
Federal 44 Magnum 240 gr

ec7ff32167eccc82fe9cdb2cd8bd0ecd.jpg0ee6a7f47132ed3f19d3101c7a1831ef.jpg


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1 minute ago, CDRGlock said:


I had carpal tunnel surgery 10 years ago.

It didn’t affect me.

I shoot pistols from my 22 LR up to the Smith 500.

 

 

 

 

How long did it take for your to get back to 100%

 

Can you dry fire hard without pain?

 

Can you do a 500-1k round practice session without any pain? Its gotten to the point where shooting 300 rounds of 40 makes my hand hurt for a few hours after.. 500 and I have pain for a week.

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I had surgery on my hand about this time last year. Not carpal, but torn tendons in my hand due to arthritis. Not a 1:1, but if imagine the experience is about the same from the surgery side. My issue was on my support hand, so I ended up shooting rimfire matches for a month or two strong hand only. Was good for my strong hand shooting overall, and good to keep me shooting. Beyond that, erased my way up from 22 to 9 to 45. I've got some pain that comes and goes, but I shoot 500+ most weekends and I'm still good to go. YMMV. 

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How long did it take for your to get back to 100%
 
Can you dry fire hard without pain?
 
Can you do a 500-1k round practice session without any pain? Its gotten to the point where shooting 300 rounds of 40 makes my hand hurt for a few hours after.. 500 and I have pain for a week.


It took me about 6 months.

Yes, I can fire hard without pain.

I do about 400-600 rounds without pain, though majority is only 9 mm. I through in the large Magnums in the mix.

I just shot a lot of Magnums today. No issues.


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J, it’s B.  Guy I shoot steel challenge with a lot had surgeries in both hands (wrists) earlier this year.  Had an excellent surgeon, supposed to be the best in this area.  Was about a month to anything useful and he couldn’t stay away, was shooting with weight training padded gloves earlier than probably should have.  He’s 100 percent now.  Can easily be done in early off season and expect to return (knowing your drive) 100 percent physically with some skill reconditioning the next season barring some type of unexpected complication.  Unfortunately, I may be in the same boat soon.  If you want any other info, message me.  

 

PS....may just have to look into PCC to shoot earlier than should.  Lol.

Edited by Hammer002

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13 hours ago, Hammer002 said:

J, it’s B.  Guy I shoot steel challenge with a lot had surgeries in both hands (wrists) earlier this year.  Had an excellent surgeon, supposed to be the best in this area.  Was about a month to anything useful and he couldn’t stay away, was shooting with weight training padded gloves earlier than probably should have.  He’s 100 percent now.  Can easily be done in early off season and expect to return (knowing your drive) 100 percent physically with some skill reconditioning the next season barring some type of unexpected complication.  Unfortunately, I may be in the same boat soon.  If you want any other info, message me.  

 

PS....may just have to look into PCC to shoot earlier than should.  Lol.

 

No PCC for me. I will shoot you a message here in a few minutes. Thanks

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I have had the surgery in both of my hands. The right in 1996, and the left in 2015. Both done by the same doctor. The first, it seemed like it was 6 months after the surgery before I could even hold a pencil without pain. The second, I was back to shooting within 2 months. There are several different types of surgery, and it depends on how severe the constriction of the nerves are. I had the type where they cut from your palm to the middle of your wrist to get to the tunnel (mine were severe). Had a coworker have the other type, where they make a small (1/2" long) incision in your wrist and go in and cauterize around the nerves in the tunnel, opening it up. He was back 100% in a week. In my surgeries, they had to physically cut the tunnel, then it heals back naturally. 

 

I don't have any pics of the first surgery, but here is one from the second (left hand).

20160503_124240.jpg

20160604_183300.jpg

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47 minutes ago, GrumpyOne said:

I have had the surgery in both of my hands. The right in 1996, and the left in 2015. Both done by the same doctor. The first, it seemed like it was 6 months after the surgery before I could even hold a pencil without pain. The second, I was back to shooting within 2 months. There are several different types of surgery, and it depends on how severe the constriction of the nerves are. I had the type where they cut from your palm to the middle of your wrist to get to the tunnel (mine were severe). Had a coworker have the other type, where they make a small (1/2" long) incision in your wrist and go in and cauterize around the nerves in the tunnel, opening it up. He was back 100% in a week. In my surgeries, they had to physically cut the tunnel, then it heals back naturally. 

 

I don't have any pics of the first surgery, but here is one from the second (left hand).

20160503_124240.jpg

20160604_183300.jpg

 

NARLEY!

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FWIW, I’ve had way too many surgeries in my life.  I just had back surgery last week, and 8 new screws put in my right arm a handful of weeks before that due to a compound fracture.  This was my second back surgery, I broke the other arm exactly the sane way a dozen years earlier, and I’ve had surgery for “shooter’s elbow” a few years ago as well.  At this moment I have a total of two plates and 17 screws in my body.  I plan to earn my 4th SC GM card In early 2019, if not sooner.  Make up your mind to do it, accept pain as part of the process, and do it.  The folks who don’t recover from these types of surgeries are generally the ones who avoid discomfort during the recovery and physical therapy process.  When I broke my left arm, they told me that I may only get 80% range of motion back, but I refused to accept that and after about 2 years had 100% range of motion.  Only a few months out, and my right arm already has 100% range of motion though I’m still working on strength.  I was doing light dryfire 12 days after this last back surgery.  Yes, it hurts, but take comfort that in my experience it hurts more before the surgery than it does after getting fixed.  If you’re already practicing that much with the pain, imagine how much better you’ll be without the pain.    

Edited by jkrispies

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50 minutes ago, coordinator said:

I too am experiencing this. Is there any chance it will just go away?

None at all. If you wear a wrist brace for several months, and don't work the wrist that much, the symptoms will subside, somewhat....But, the slightest work out of the wrist will bring the symptoms back...and in the meantime, all the while, the nerves are still being strangled and dying. Get the surgery as soon as possible. I waited on my right hand about 6 months, and now I do not have full feeling in my ring finger and little finger.

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35 minutes ago, jkrispies said:

FWIW, I’ve had way too many surgeries in my life.  I just had back surgery last week, and 8 new screws put in my right arm a handful of weeks before that due to a compound fracture.  This was my second back surgery, I broke the other arm exactly the sane way a dozen years earlier, and I’ve had surgery for “shooter’s elbow” a few years ago as well.  At this moment I have a total of two plates and 17 screws in my body.  I plan to earn my 4th SC GM card In early 2019, if not sooner.  Make up your mind to do it, accept pain as part of the process, and do it.  The folks who don’t recover from these types of surgeries are generally the ones who avoid discomfort during the recovery and physical therapy process.  When I broke my left arm, they told me that I may only get 80% range of motion back, but I refused to accept that and after about 2 years had 100% range of motion.  Only a few months out, and my right arm already has 100% range of motion though I’m still working on strength.  I was doing light dryfire 12 days after this last back surgery.  Yes, it hurts, but take comfort that in my experience it hurts more before the surgery than it does after getting fixed.  If you’re already practicing that much with the pain, imagine how much better you’ll be without the pain.    

With Carpal Tunnel, it's not so much the pain (before the surgery, anyway), but the numbness. The easiest way to explain it to someone who has never had it is, imagine that you wake up and your hand is asleep from sleeping on it wrong...but the pins and needles feeling never goes away. When it gets severe, you won't be able to tell how hard (or more likely) or how little you are grasping something. You can feel like you have a good grip on something and it just falls from your hand...and once the nerves die from being strangled, they never come back. 

 

Get the surgery. A few months of discomfort is well worth having feeling in your palms and fingers.

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Carpal Tunnel is a repetitive motion disorder. Any repetitive motion can cause it.

 

Also, Carpal Tunnel may not only be in the wrist, but also in the elbow and shoulder. The same nerves go through a cartilage tunnel in each of those joints. The most common type is the wrist however. 

 

They may take a metal ring, with a wire attached to it, put it on your ring finger, and them take a stun gun and shock your wrist, your elbow, and your shoulder, and time each shock to the metal ring. This will let them know at which joint the constriction is taking place.

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Grumpy One, thank you for your counsel. I'm going to pursue treatment, the burning wakes me up at night. jkrispies, thank you for your advice into the importance of therapy follow up. Gentlemen, thank you.

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I recommend that you use surgery only as a Last Resort, iff the pain is Very Uncomfortable

and will NOT go away even with proper exercises and rest in combination.

 

Do Everything you can do to make the situation better before you consider surgery.

 

I've heard from MANY people that they suffered 6 months of rehab and the surgery

did NOT solve anything.

 

Try exercise and rest first, in healthy doses before you let a surgeon at you.    :cheers: 

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1 minute ago, Hi-Power Jack said:

I recommend that you use surgery only as a Last Resort, iff the pain is Very Uncomfortable

and will NOT go away even with proper exercises and rest in combination.

 

Do Everything you can do to make the situation better before you consider surgery.

 

I've heard from MANY people that they suffered 6 months of rehab and the surgery

did NOT solve anything.

 

Try exercise and rest first, in healthy doses before you let a surgeon at you.    :cheers: 

Jack, exercising the wrist only exacerbates the problem. Any exercise that you do for your wrist is a repetitive motion. The only way to relieve the symptoms is non use, a wrist brace to keep it from moving. And while it may relieve the symptoms after months of wearing the brace, it won't take long after it is removed and you start using your hands and wrist normally again before the symptoms return. 

 

The pain is caused by the nerves being starved. Starve them long enough and they die. Once dead, they never come back, even after the surgery. 

 

Sure, the surgery is painful...but the surgery pain is temporary compared to the rest of your life dealing with the nerve pain.

 

Like I said, I had my right wrist done in 1996, and since then (after recover), I have not had a single issue. The left wrist done in 2015, with the same result. 

 

I'm a DC electrician. I work with my hands everyday, pulling large power cables, bending them, connecting them. The repetitive motion of pulling those cables and then lacing them down is what caused it in my wrists...once I had the surgery, I still do exactly what I did before, with 100% range of motion.

 

Jack, here is a picture of the cable we use. The ball point pen is for scale. The cable weighs 3.1 lbs per foot.

20170519_152147.jpg

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Surgery isn't the only treatment. There's no guarantee that other treatments will do it, but "The American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons recommends proceeding conservatively with a course of nonsurgical therapies tried before release surgery is considered. A different treatment should be tried if the current treatment fails to resolve the symptoms within 2 to 7 weeks." (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Carpal_tunnel_syndrome#Treatment)

 

https://www.aaos.org/Research/guidelines/CTSTreatmentGuideline.pdf

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I too am experiencing this. Is there any chance it will just go away?

If your symptoms are mild or mild to moderate, sometimes it can improve, if you use a splint.

My friend used a CTRAC device that used a pneumatic pump to improve his carpal tunnel symptoms.

If your symptoms are moderate to severe, then you may develop permanent nerve damage and muscular atrophy.


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Carpal Tunnel is a repetitive motion disorder. Any repetitive motion can cause it.
 
Also, Carpal Tunnel may not only be in the wrist, but also in the elbow and shoulder. The same nerves go through a cartilage tunnel in each of those joints. The most common type is the wrist however. 
 
They may take a metal ring, with a wire attached to it, put it on your ring finger, and them take a stun gun and shock your wrist, your elbow, and your shoulder, and time each shock to the metal ring. This will let them know at which joint the constriction is taking place.


The issue in the elbow is called cubital tunnel syndrome.

In the shoulder it may be thoracic outlet syndrome, subclavian steal syndrome or impingement in the brachial plexus.

Carpal tunnel is limited to the wrist. It is impingement of the median nerve.


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I knew it had other names for the elbow and shoulder, but it is essentially the same syndrome.

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I knew it had other names for the elbow and shoulder, but it is essentially the same syndrome.

Yes. The concept is similar. Nerve impingement; however, some people can develop neuromas, neurofibromas, schwanomas, of the nerve, or alternatively, people can have vascular impingement syndromes, too. In trauma, there can be transection of the nerve or nerve sheath, for example.


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8 hours ago, perttime said:

Surgery isn't the only treatment. There's no guarantee that other treatments will do it, but "The American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons recommends proceeding conservatively with a course of nonsurgical therapies tried before release surgery is considered. A different treatment should be tried if the current treatment fails to resolve the symptoms within 2 to 7 weeks." (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Carpal_tunnel_syndrome#Treatment)

 

https://www.aaos.org/Research/guidelines/CTSTreatmentGuideline.pdf

 

 

Its my last resort, Doctor was pretty clear after the EMG that I will likely need it in both hands and my right hand is 99% sure it will need done.

 

I am starting with physical therapy first and also going to see a massage therapist that has some experience working with carpal tunnel syndrome. I won't be looking at surgery until after Limited nationals this year so that gives me a couple months to try the other stuff and see if it helps or stays the same. As it sits right now I can't practice and its hard to compete and improve against GM competitors if you don't dry fire or live fire.

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I had both my wrist done in 2011. I had sever carpal tunnel in both. What drove me to have it done was lack of sleep and losing hand strength. I had mine done Arthroscopic. I highly recommend the arthroscopic procedure. I am a union Ironworker and welder. I went back to work almost immediately. Lots of pain but I had a full recovery with zero reoccurrence of symptoms.


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2 hours ago, Foxj66 said:

 

 

Doctor was pretty clear after the EMG that I will likely need it in both hands and my right hand is 99% sure it will need done.

 

Surgeons will always tell you it is necessary - most likely so his wife can

pay off her beemer    :(

 

Last option, only - don't jump in too quickly.

 

Good luck with it, either way.    :) 

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