Steroid shot for Carpal Tunnel?

Hi brains trust, just wanting to find out if anyone has had steroid injections for carpal tunnel, and what the experience was like? Was it at least partly effective?

It’s a bit odd carpal tunnel has popped up now, as my arthritis has actually been really quite good since starting Stelara in June (or at least I thought so), but it seems like it’s a pretty definitive diagnosis and I’ve gotta be able to use my hands or I’m not going to be able to work (which will make eating difficult :rofl::rofl:).

How long did it take for you to notice results? And has anyone tried systemic steroids for it? I have Crohns that just will not abate at the moment, so I am wondering if I give up all these other methods and try prednisone.

I do seem to be quite resistant to it though (too much at the start of my PSA journey I suspect), so it won’t be a nice experience (likely >50mg a day for weeks before tapering). Any tips welcome, as I have the first injection scheduled in 10 days.

had something to do w carpal tunnel years ago and had a series of steroid shots on the wrist to sort it out. Am having carpal tunnel issues again at the moment, sometimes hand made me drop objects - destroyed an expensive dual laptop and the camera on my smart phone as well as the glass cover, and at times find it impossible to open cans bottle tops etc. Am hesitating to resort to shots once again, as disease seems to come and go in waves, but never say never

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Sorry to hear you too :confused:. Sounds like the steroid shots helped some though, so that’s something!

Hope it gets sorted for you soon, it’s frustrating struggling to write and lots of other things we can’t do (I habe no chance with bottles and jars at the moment :joy::joy:)

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Was so frustrated about the bottle issue at work bathed in a moment of self pity, embarassing, strange this extreme weakness not constant. Have had so many accidents since childhood w broken bones that am ambidextrous at the moment. I encourage you to use your left hand and train it as much as poss. The shots do work anyway, am continuing trying to complement medication w supplements, carnivore diet and fasting to lower inflammation, and things seem moderately ok at the moment. All the best

In my previous life I litigated loads of cases around RSI. Reptitive Strain Injury or Upper Limb Work Related Disorders. Australia is the home and a really source of information on this too. I can’t tell you the number of times I quoted stuff from Australian experts on this. This is all back in the early 1990’s.

So @Jen75 you’re in the right place for expertise in this area. Since carpal tunnel syndrome is the inflammation of the synovial sheath in your wrist, it totally makes sense that the first treatment should be properly guided steroid shots and personally I would imagine they would have a better chance than just pred tablets. And if the shots fail there’s always a carpal tunnel release operation too although they tend not to be too great sucess wise with an underlying inflammatory condition like ours, or at least that was the case back in the day. Things of course might well have changed now.

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Thanks so much Poo, I’m glad to hear we are headed in the right direction.

I think more than anything I’m just frustrated with little progress for so long, so my primitive brain is going “bugger it, surely if I throw enough steroids on top I’ll feel better!!” :joy::joy:. I’ll stick with the shots. The exercise physiologist seemed a bit doubtful about getting back to horseriding, but I didn’t think I would from PsA either, so we’ll see about that! Besides, it’s mostly legs, I’ll just have to get better at using those :joy::joy:

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You’re in such a frustrating place presently aren’t you? This Crohn’s addition seems such a nightmare. Lots of cyber hugs @Jen75 and indeed you too @letizia


Just a report back on the steroid shot for the carpal tunnel.

Yes, it’s a pretty uncomfortable shot. They use an anaesthetic in the same shot which does not minimise this discomfort, but instead numbs for the next 6-10 hours so that the already inflamed tissue isn’t immensely painful due to having a needle shoved in it.

That worked for me, and as it wore off, my wrist was pretty painful (only a little worse than at its worst previously). But though it was a bit more painful, as the anaesthetic wore off, I could almost immediately notice better dexterity, which was my personal major concern. That kept improving over the next 3-4 days, and though there is minor residual numbness and tingling in my fingertips, my hand and fingers are working really well.

I had lots of energy for the first few days, and my other wrist has actually improved a bit too (systemic effects I think). Next injection for the other wrist in a few days.


That’s sounding very positive and hopefully the same for the other wrist too.

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Well, my carpal tunnel is back with a vengeance. But this time the injection relieved pain for only around 5 days (numbness and dexterity barely improved), then I was back at square one and progressing (in the wrong direction) again.

This time it is much more painful, and as well as my hands hurting, the pain refers into my forearms, elbows, and all the way up into my shoulders.

At this stage, I can’t even rest my hands on a desk or the dining table for more than a few minutes without it becoming extremely uncomfortable. It often takes me a few goes to eat dinner (spoon food usually :joy:). I’ve also had a few parathesias at night (in addition to the pain that wakes me constantly- though thankfully the amitriptyline took the edge off that a bit so it’s only 2-3 times per night, though it is still worsening).

Last ultrasound showed only mild compression, so my question to those of you who have experience with it (@Poo_therapy, @letizia, @Seenie @tntlamb ), is does this sound consistent with carpal tunnel or should I be suspecting this may be complicated by something else (eg vasculitis of the nerves) and looking for a nerve study? Shoul I try another injection? GP is talking surgery but I’m not too keen, especially as it is bilateral and obviously linked to my inflammatory disease,

After the last steroid injection it flared right up again, the day after my bowel surgery (Crohn’s) it was much better and 3 days later in remission which lasted a couple of months.

Years ago now I litigated cases of carpal tunnel syndrome which were claimed to be from ‘working’ as in it was the employer’s fault. Australia led the way on all these cases of ‘work related upper limb disorders’ and had a significant level of expertise in the causes and indeed the relevant varying treatments. Mild compression can certainly be enough for significant diability as you’re finding out as it just gets stuck on the nerves causing the pain like your experiencing. I would explore the surgery - there are mixed reviews of it but I think that depends on the skills of the surgeon really. You want a hand surgeon at the top of his/her game really. But I would also rule out the involvement of vasculitis too. A nerve conduction test would be essential too in my view before any surgery just anyway.

It never rains but it pours for you @Jen75. You really are in such a autoimmune storm aren’t you?

Loads more cyber hugs winging their way to you. xx


You can say that again, @Poo_therapy: it doesn’t rain or it pours for our Jen75. Sigh

This is really more a question for @tntlamb , methinks. My carpal is acting up again, but it’s only numbness in the thumb and index finger. Referred pain, don’t know anything about that, although tnt will.

I was at the rheum yesterday, and we’ve agreed it’s time for me and Humira to split. Next up is Cosentyx. We will see.

Sounds like carpal but doubt it is. I don’t have a lot of confidence in ultra sound but frankly It sounds to me more like an issue with the medial epicondyle. or even the acromion both extremley common issues with inflammatoryy arthritis. I’d get some nerve conduction studies an’or studies of shoulder and elbow before I got too excited. Clearly the block did no good. what relief you did get was prolly from the numbing stuff.

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Thankyou Poo, I’m catching those hugs and feeling them! Mighty nice cause I don’t get out much these days - we have followed the UK into a massive omicron wave and I haven’t been able to get my third dose of vaccine yet (my second was over 6 months ago).

Looks like I’m off for a nerve conduction study either way. That’s probably good - it will be reassuring to find it is “just” carpal tunnel.

No it never rains, I’m having a flood here at the moment…. The latest extra thing we are now trying to sort out is hypercalcemia. Thankfully it’s only mild and we picked it up early with enough time to figure it out before it starts causing problems. But sheesh!

At least the Remicade is preventing those awful sudden flare ups that send me to hospital, for that I’m very grateful.

I’m sorry to hear you and Humira have to break up. It always hurts, even if you had a good run on it. Here’s hoping the next one will be even better!

Thanks @tntlamb, I will ask for broader conduction studies than just the carpal tunnel. Yes I’m pretty certain this time it was just anasthetic helping. Last time it seemed to literally move my bodies focus of the inflammation, and switch it to something else, because both wrists responded to one injection :joy:. That’s one of the reasons I’m so sure it’s not primarily mechanical. And the surgery response. Oh well, I have this week added endocrinologist to my list of specialists (the calcium), next week I guess it will be neurologist. I think I’m up to 9 :joy:

A physiatirist may be a better choice than neurology…

Looks like I have more research to do!!! :joy:

Hope Cosentyx works as well for you as it does for me. And remember it dips after the loading doses but does pick back up again.

Hey @Jen75, I sure hope that you find quick improvement and accurate results! Added to your current health issues is the fact that all back issue magazines have been removed from the waiting rooms! Hang in there!