Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
Back in my early days of practicing, my mentor and cousin, Dr. Robert Radtke, introduced me to Dr. Jonathan Wright and his books on healing with nutrition. One of the cases spoke of a connection between Vitamin B6 deficiency and Carpal Tunnel Syndrome. Carpal Tunnel Syndrome is a condition where there is pain and weakness in the hand and wrist. Commonly thought to be an entrapment of the median nerve which runs through the wrist, the traditional treatment consists of wrist splints, activity modification, steroid injections and sometimes surgery.
Symptoms of Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
As a functional health practitioner, I believe there is more to it than that and safer, more effective treatments.
A Need For Chiropractic
Repetitive stress can cause irritation in muscles and ligaments leading to misalignment of the joints. A misalignment of the wrist, elbow, shoulder or neck once corrected with a gentle chiropractic adjustment, can be effective in resolving symptoms. This is a quick and easy correction that can get a person to return to their activities within days.
Extinguish the Fire
Inflammation itself can cause symptoms of carpal tunnel syndrome as can the swelling and fluid retention that comes with it. Addressing inflammation is essential to any disease process. An anti-inflammatory diet and supplements can be helpful.
Not to make it more complicated, but…
Hormone imbalances (especially while pregnant or on birth control pills), heavy metals, microbes, diabetes, autoimmune disease (like rheumatoid arthritis) and toxicity can all contribute to symptoms of carpal tunnel syndrome.
Here is where we bring it back around to the vitamin B6 deficiency connection. You need B vitamins, and especially B6, are for proper nerve function. Taking 100 milligrams of vitamin B6 in the form of pyridoxal-5-phosphate three times a day for 3-8 weeks has been shown to give relief of carpal tunnel syndrome symptoms. Vitamin B6 can’t be converted to its active form without zinc. A quick test we do in the office is a zinc tally test. Within minutes we can identify a zinc deficiency and correct that along with the B6 or you can just take zinc, 20 milligrams once or twice a day, with the B6.
So don’t despair if you get diagnosed with carpal tunnel syndrome there are safe and effective treatments available.