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A 40-year-old member asked:

Local aneasthesia for carpal tunnel? i'm terrified about general anaesthesia and am a poor candidate for it due to my age and heart condition. i require surgery for carpal tunnel in my hands. is there a way i could undergo this with local anaesthesia only

5 doctor answers14 doctors weighed in
Dr. Geoffrey Rutledge
Internal Medicine 42 years experience
Yes, : Yes, carpal tunnel surgery can be done under regional anesthesia rather than general. Regional anesthesia involves using injections of anesthetic medication directly around the nerves that usually carry pain signals from the hand and wrist to the brain. This can be done at the level of the wrist, or more commonly near the neck and shoulder to numb the entire limb. Often patients under local or regional anesthesia are given sedative medications to make them sleepy during surgery so that they are not uncomfortable not moving for the hour or so while the surgery occurs, and also so that they don't remember being operated on. The sedation is mild enough that you remain partially conscious and will not need a machine to help you breathe.
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Dr. Todd Guyette
Specializes in Hand Surgery
Yes: Newer endoscopic techniques can require general anesthesia, but the traditional open technique, which has just as good results, can be done under straight local anesthesia.
Created for people with ongoing healthcare needs but benefits everyone.
Dr. Richard Pollard
Anesthesiology 31 years experience
Yes: You will have to discuss this with your surgeon and anesthesiologist. I would suggest that a small dose of a sedative would be safe despite your condition. This would make your experience more pleasant.
Created for people with ongoing healthcare needs but benefits everyone.
Dr. Rodney Del Valle
A Verified Doctoranswered
37 years experience
Yes: Few techniques can be use. Monitor anesthesia care with sedation and local anesthesia by surgeon; bier block-intravenous regional block and regional blocks like axillary brachial plexus block. All are very safe.
Created for people with ongoing healthcare needs but benefits everyone.
Dr. Alex Meyers
Hand Surgery 26 years experience
Carpal tunnel syn: Local anesthetic alone for carpal tunnel surgery can work great. It's a good option for that surgery.
Created for people with ongoing healthcare needs but benefits everyone.
Dr. David Rosenfeld
Pain Management 28 years experience
A carpel tunnel release can certainly be done under local anesthetic.
Apr 29, 2017
Last updated Jan 23, 2019

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