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Healthwise Knowledgebase - Definition

Search Health Information    Carpal Tunnel

Carpal Tunnel

The carpal tunnel is a narrow passageway in the wrist that is made of bones on three sides and a ligament (transverse carpal ligament) across the wrist where the palm and forearm meet.

Inside the tunnel are:

  • Tendons, which are strong and flexible (but not stretchable) bands of tissue that connect muscle to bone. The tendons are surrounded by membranes (synovial membranes called tendon sheaths).
  • The median nerve, which controls some movement in the thumb and gives sensation to the thumb, index finger, middle finger, and half of the ring finger.

Last Revised: October 2, 2012

Author: Healthwise Staff

Medical Review: Kathleen Romito, MD - Family Medicine & Herbert von Schroeder, MD, MSc, FRCSC - Hand and Microvascular Surgery

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