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Upper Limb

The effect of psychological disturbance on symptoms, self-reported disability and surgical outcome in carpal tunnel syndrome

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In a prospective study, we have evaluated the impact of psychological disturbance on symptoms, self-reported disability and the surgical outcome in a series of 110 patients with carpal tunnel syndrome. Self-reported severity of symptoms and disability were assessed using the patient evaluation measure and the Boston carpal tunnel questionnaire. Psychological distress was assessed using the hospital anxiety and depression scale.

There was a significant association between psychological disturbance and the pre-operative symptoms and disability. However, there was no significant association between pre-operative psychological disturbance and the outcome of surgery at six months. We concluded that patients with carpal tunnel syndrome should not be denied surgery because of pre-operative psychological disturbance since it does not adversely affect the surgical outcome.

Correspondence should be sent to Mr J. L. Hobby; e-mail: jonathan.hobby@btopenworld.com

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