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Neurologic Disorders Masquerading as Carpal Tunnel Syndrome: 12 Cases of Failed Carpal Tunnel Release

  • Author Footnotes
    1 Dr Witt is now with Murfreesboro Medical Clinic and Surgicenter, Murfreesboro, Tenn.
    John C. Witt
    Footnotes
    1 Dr Witt is now with Murfreesboro Medical Clinic and Surgicenter, Murfreesboro, Tenn.
    Affiliations
    Department of Neurology, Mayo Clinic Scottsdale, Scottsdale, Ariz
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  • J. Clarke Stevens
    Correspondence
    Address reprint requests and correspondence to J. Clarke Stevens, MD, Department of Neurology, Mayo Clinic Scottsdale, 13400 E Shea Blvd, Scottsdale, AZ 85259
    Affiliations
    Department of Neurology, Mayo Clinic Scottsdale, Scottsdale, Ariz
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  • Author Footnotes
    1 Dr Witt is now with Murfreesboro Medical Clinic and Surgicenter, Murfreesboro, Tenn.
      We describe 12 patients with a diagnosis of carpal tunnel syndrome in whom carpal tunnel release was unsuccessful and another neurologic disorder was diagnosed subsequently. Final diagnoses included polyneuropathy, radiculopathy, motor neuron disease, spondylotic myelopathy, syringomyelia, and multiple sclerosis. Sources of error by the electromyographer and treating physician were identified. Care must be taken to avoid an inappropriate carpal tunnel operation when clinical or electrodiagnostic features are atypical.
      CTR ( carpal tunnel release), CTS ( carpal tunnel syndrome), EMG ( electromyography), NCS ( nerve conduction study)

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