INTRODUCTION: Carpal Tunnel Syndrome is known to be a common complication during pregnancy especially during the third trimester.
AIM: This article focuses on its impact to the third trimester pregnant mothers with CTS.
METHODS: Third trimester pregnant mothers with no other known risk factors for CTS, were interviewed and examined for a clinical diagnosis of CTS. The severity of CTS was assessed by means of symptoms severity and functionality using the Boston Carpal Tunnel Questionnaire.
RESULTS: Out of 333 third trimester pregnant mothers, 82 (24.6%) were clinically diagnosed with CTS. Malay race was found to have significant correlation with the diagnosis of CTS (p = 0.024) and are two times more likely to get CTS during pregnancy (OR = 2.26) compare to the non-Malays. Bilateral CTS was two times higher (n = 58, 63.4%) than unilateral cases (n = 30, 36.6%), however no significant correlation between the two was found with severity (p = 0.284) or functional (p = 0.906). The commonest complaint was numbness/tingling during day time (n = 63, 76.8%). Majority of the CTS cases were mild (n = 66, 80.5%) and approximately one third (n = 28, 34.1%) had affected hand functions. All symptoms related to pain was found to have significant correlation with severity (p = 0.00, OR = 12.23) and function (p = 0.005, OR = 5.01), whereas numbness and tingling does not (Severity, p = 0.843, function, p = 0.632).
CONCLUSION: This study shows that even though CTS in third trimester pregnancy is prevalent, generally it would be mild. However, function can still be affected especially if patients complain of pain.
* Title and MeSH Headings from MEDLINE®/PubMed®, a database of the U.S. National Library of Medicine.