So now that you know what structures are involved, what happens? In carpal tunnel syndrome, the soft tissue that are within the carpal tunnel get inflamed and thickened. Usually this occurs due to trauma or overuse, such as typing on a computer at work for years. The muscles of the forearm continue to shorten and thicken the more they are overused, which causes them to get inflamed. As this cycle continues (more shortening, thickening, and inflammation), it propagates further down the muscles and causes their tendons to get inflamed. As the tendons get inflamed, they use up more room within the carpal tunnel (which is limited on space anyhow). As more room is used up by the inflamed tendons, more friction is created and thus there is more inflammation. As this process continues, the median nerve starts to get compressed and irritated. As the nerve gets trapped and inflamed, you experience numbness or pain or both.
Henry, ., Jacobson, ., Banerjee, M., Hayden, J., Jeffrey, B., Smerage, J., … Hayes, . (2010, September 15). A Prospective Study of Aromatase InhibitorAssociated Musculoskeletal Symptoms and Abnormalities on Serial High-Resolution Wrist Ultrasonography. Cancer . Retrieved from http:///store///asset/25385_?v=1&t=j029gl5c&s=f322b3263af88fe71fe6042b7f49f567880becb0&systemMessage=Pay+per+view+article+purchase%28PPV%29+on+Wiley+Online+Library+will+be+unavailable+on+Saturday+11th+March+from+05%3A00-14%3A00+GMT+%2F+12%3A00-09%3A00+EST+%2F+13%3A00-22%3A00+SGT+for+essential+maintenance.++Apologies+for+the+inconvenience