Prevalence of Obesity in Carpal Tunnel Syndrome Patients: A Cross-Sectional Survey.
Carpal tunnel syndrome (CTS) is the most common compressive entrapment neuropathy caused by the compression of the median nerve at the wrist space known as the carpal tunnel. The epidemiologic factors related to CTS include genetic, medical, social, vocational, and demographic factors. The common symptoms experienced include pain, paresthesia, and numbness in the median nerve distribution. If left untreated, it can lead to irreversible median nerve damage, causing a loss of hand function. Body mass index (BMI) has been attributed as a risk factor for the development of CTS. We planned to determine the frequency of obesity among CTS patients in the neurophysiology department of a tertiary care center in Islamabad, Pakistan. The survey was designed as a cross-sectional descriptive study from March 2016 to August 2016 using a consecutive nonprobability sampling technique. A total of 112 patients with a mean age of 54 ± 5 years were included in the study. In the study population, 39 patients (35 percent) were males and 73 were females (65 percent). Based on BMI, 74 patients (66 percent) had a normal weight and 38 (34 percent) were obese. The frequency of obesity in our study was 34 percent, excluding the other comorbid conditions, which is quite high. Targeted therapy in those with CTS should also include weight reduction measures because obesity poses a cause-and-effect relationship for both the severity and the pathogenesis of CTS.