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How is the Phalen's test administered for carpal tunnel syndrome?

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Quick Answer

Phalen's test for carpal tunnel syndrome is done by extending the arms to the front of the body, then flexing the wrists and letting the hands hang down for approximately one minute, according to WebMD. If tingling, pain or numbness is felt, a person may have carpal tunnel syndrome.

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Full Answer

There are two other tests commonly conducted to diagnose carpal tunnel syndrome, according to WebMD. One is called Tinel's sign test and the other is the two-point discrimination test. During Tinel's testing, a physician taps a patients median nerve. If the patient feels an electric shock or a pins and needles sensation, carpal tunnel syndrome may be the cause.

The two-point discrimination test is normally used when someone is thought to have a severe case of carpal tunnel syndrome. During this test, the patient closes their eyes, and touches two points on the finger or hand that are very close together simultaneously. A person with severe carpal tunnel syndrome feels only one point being touched.

Often carpal tunnel syndrome in early stages is treatable without surgical intervention, according to WebMD. People who have numbness and tingling, pain and loss of strength in the fingers or hand should wear a wrist splint at night, stop the activity that is causing the problem and rest the hand.

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