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I have Carpal Tunnel Syndrome...

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous [BG]' started by godoze, Dec 14, 2002.

  1. godoze


    Oct 21, 2002
    Found out yesterday that I have cp in my right middle and ring fingers. it's not too bad at the moment, I'm wearing the brace and trying to take it easy.

    My Doctor, believe it or not said that as long as i don't slap like victor wooten i should be just fine! i thought that was funny...

    I went thru tendonitis in both arms about 7 years ago and couldn't touch a bass for 9 months... i do not expect the same level of severity with this but am wondering if any of you have gone thru carpel tunnel syndrome and what you did or didn't do to aid the healing process.:(
  2. SuperDuck


    Sep 26, 2000
    That's rough, man. I started developing a few symptoms of CP last year, and that scared the living jeebus out of me. I think people need to be more aware of how important stretching is before playing.
  3. godoze


    Oct 21, 2002
    not only stretching but not playing every minute of the day ! you have to take breaks and if you feel pain -Stop playing for a bit !

    This is a repetitive motion injury. IMO i think it's better to rest until you're healthy then run the risk of never being able to play again...Yikes !
  4. dls59

    dls59 Supporting Member

    I'm getting it, also. If I play more than 15 minutes without dropping my hands for a few seconds, to shake some circulation back in them, they go to sleep. I hate that. I need to get this checked, for sure.
  5. Been there, done that, got the t-shirt, and starred in the video.

    There is treatment (physical therapy) that is amazingly effective, and of course just using "common sense" - if your hand is hurting or going numb, take a break!

    Luckily, my CTS was job-related (non-musical), and the cure was quite simple: I quit the job! :D I also had to do a couple of months of 3 days a week PT, but I happily recovered 98% of my strength in my right wrist (didn't have any trouble with the left) in that time. I didn't stop playing and gigging though, as the doctor and physical therapist both concluded that my particular case of CTS was unrelated to my playing. Whew! Boy, do I miss health insurance!!! :(

    Unfortunately, that isn't really an option for some folks, and they need to approach it differently.

    I found that my biggest problem time was when I was sleeping ( :confused: ), but wearing a brace at night really fixed that problem.

    I'm now pretty much over it, it rears it's head when I've been playing a LOT, or typing a lot (er....), but otherwise no problems.

    Make very sure you stretch before playing, and take the time to take a break every few minutes and stretch your wrists/forearms to keep from aggrivating the situation.

    Good luck!
  6. Turock

    Turock Supporting Member

    Apr 30, 2000
    You certainly do need to get that checked out. That is exactly one of the symptons I had. I got to where I couldn't even feel the strings at all; I had to have surgery. I never realized just how much my CTS hampered my playing until after the surgery. It felt like my right hand had been "released".
  7. people keep telling me to stretch, but i dont even know how! my bass teacher never taught me, and i've never seen anyone do it, and i already have child-mild arthiritus HELP!
  8. Hategear

    Hategear Workin' hard at hardly workin'.

    Apr 6, 2001
    Appleton, Swissconsin
    I also have a case of tendonitis in my elbows and fluid in my knees. Man, if I were a horse, I'd shoot me.


    Try icing your wrist(s) for ten minutes at night. Do that every night for a week. The following week, do ten minutes of ice and ten minutes of heat every night. Make sure you do some light stretching as well and take ibuprofin to keep the swelling down. You can take up to 4 ibuprofin tablets every four hours. Invest in some Mineral Ice or some nice Ben Gay as well.
  9. SuperDuck


    Sep 26, 2000
    Take your arm and hold it straight out in front of you. Point your palm out and your fingers up in the air, as if you were saying, "Stop!" to someone that needed to be told as such. With your other arm, pull back on your collective fingers GENTLY. You will feel the strain in your forearm. DO NOT FORCE your hand back. Do this for a count of five, stop, and shake out your hand. This will get the circulation flowing in your hand. Do the stretch again, and then shake out your hand. This will help things immensely. And always warm up before you jump into playing, as well. :)
  10. I have tendonitus. It sucks!!!

    I warm up, and it can take up to 30mins before im freely able to mvoe my hands without pains :(

    I've been liekd this for.. 2 months now :eek: - a month ago I got it checked and stopped playing as much, it sucks:(

    I even raised my bass :eek: hehehe
  11. godoze


    Oct 21, 2002
    i wonder if we have a doctor in Tb that may have
  12. How does stretching help? Isn't Carpel Tunnel a friction/heat kind of thing? What does stretching do?
  13. godoze


    Oct 21, 2002
    ct is the compression of the ulnar nerve in the carpal tunnel ( a tunnnel in your wrist that goes thru some bone)
  14. KeithPas

    KeithPas Supporting Member

    May 16, 2000
    I have had CP surgery on my left hand and I also had trigger finger surgery on the same hand and it still is'nt right. GODOZ, if you are only experienciing the symptoms of CP in two of your finger "trigger finger" or "trigger tendons" in the palm of the hand could be the culprit. I gigged two weeks after my surgery. Sleeping with a hand brace helps me as well. Good luck to you
  15. AndyGL


    Nov 20, 2000
    Wellsville, NY
    The first time I realized I had a problem was about two years ago. While playing a long set, in the middle of a song, my fingers on my left hand froze up. Wow was that freaky. It happened at the next gig again and so I went to the doctor for a CP test. The doctor said I did not have CP but did feel I've been stressing my hands and wrists pretty hard from 30 years of playing bass. Stretching, Advil, a wrist band and sets no longer then one hour have been an answer for me. I suggest the stretching everyday whether you play or not. I do 3 Advil an hour before the gig, wrist bands are a must and although I hate to take breaks, I ask the guys to stop if we run over an hour. Although this routine is a pain in the arss, its better then the dreaded alternative. I guess no one said it would be easy being a geezer.
  16. Wrong Robot

    Wrong Robot Guest

    Apr 8, 2002
    what are some wrist stretches that will help to prevent CTS? I've never really thought about it, but it definatly is something to have in your mind and be concerned about, the thought of not being able to play...kills me.
  17. Philbiker

    Philbiker Pat's the best!

    Dec 28, 2000
    Northern Virginia, USA
    Wrong Robot,

    Look it up on the internet, the stretches should be out there somewhere. Or ask your doctor.

    Hey I've had CTS also and have chronic tendonitis in my wrist. I've had a very expensive visit with a music specialist, and the advice he gave me was the best medical treatment I've ever had in my life.

    * Learn the stretches and do them often.
    * If you feel pain, avoid Tylenol, take Aspirin, Ibuprofin, or Naproxin. You need an anti-inflammatory. Tylenol will make your brain stop feeling the pain but the damage will continue.
    * Learn correct mouse technique when working at your computer. Turn the sensitivity down so that you have to move your whole arm to move the mouse. Just using your wrist on an ultra-sensitive mouse is extremely poor.
    * Use the mouse alternately with your left and right hands. Using the same hand all the time causes that hand to have problems.
    * Do not use the little feet on the back of your keyboard. Always keep them closed. They are evil™. You don't want to bend your wrist that much.
    * Try to play fingerstyle, and adjust the height so that your hand feels comfortable. Pick playing is Bad™. I don't know about slapping as I never do it.
    * Carry your instrument in a gig bag, with the weight over your shoulder. Concentrating the awkward weight of the bass in your wrist is very bad.

    Good luck and take it easy.
  18. FunkySpoo

    FunkySpoo Supporting Member

    Feb 6, 2002
    not possible. no thumbs :D
  19. when i first started i would hold my bass down by my waist and i would usually play pretty long an hard and i started developing a deformaty in my left wrist, extremly painful but ide play through the pain none the less lol, i realized i shoud hole my bass higher up and on more of an angle, i still have a deformaty in my wrist but the pain never came back. also my uncle is a very experienced bassist and when he was a kid his whole right arm would turn bright purple :eek: i never asked him if it was painful but it sounded descusting none the less :D i guess he fixed whatever caused it and it doesnt happen anymore
  20. c_suders


    Sep 13, 2001
    Shippensburg, PA
    i had a tumor on my wrist when i was 5 allong with cp (thing i had at birth, dunno how i did any repetive movements at 5) and my hand never was 100%. now i'm getting cp again. sometimes i pick up my bass fret a few notes and just have to stop my hand won't work. other times its fine. just have to go with it on good days and bad. makes and schedueled playing kind of hard.

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