People With Carpal Tunnel Syndrome Are At Risk of Migraine, Finds Study

If you have carpal tunnel syndrome or any nerve compression issue, you are predisposed to migraine. Read the study here.

Chanchal Sengar
Written by: Chanchal SengarUpdated at: Nov 30, 2022 15:05 IST
People With Carpal Tunnel Syndrome Are At Risk of Migraine, Finds Study

Carpal tunnel syndrome or median nerve compression is a common condition in which the median nerve is compressed or squeezed. This causes a tingling sensation, pain and numbness in the hand and forearm. This condition worsens over time and may lead to permanent hand dysfunction if not treated on time. A new study has found that people with carpal tunnel syndrome or other similar nerve compression syndromes are at risk of migraine.

The medical journal of the American Society of Plastic Surgeons recently published a study showing the possible shared predisposition between nerve compression syndromes like carpal tunnel syndrome and migraine. This is seen mostly in people who underwent treatment or surgeries for carpal tunnel syndrome.

To find the link between nerve compression syndromes and migraine, researchers collected data of over 9,600 people who underwent surgery for nerve compression in wrist, arm and hand. A majority of the patients(about 71%) underwent surgery for median nerve decompression which is carpal tunnel syndrome.

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People With Carpal Tunnel Syndrome Are At Risk of Migraine

The team screened the patients for migraine. People who underwent nerve compression surgery for upper extremity were found to be more likely to develop migraine. These include multiple and median nerve decompression. The research team took into account various risk factors that might trigger migraine in these patients but those with multiple nerve decompression were found to have 70% higher risk of migraine. Similarly, people with median nerve decompression had 30% increased risk.

Researchers emphasised on the need for treatment for people who are dealing with nerve compression. They also noted that various techniques for migraine surgery have been developed that can effectively treat trigger points or nerve compression points that might cause migraine. Since patients with carpal tunnel syndrome are identified to have a higher risk of migraine attacks, they must seek treatment to get relief and reduce the possible risks. Consult your doctor to find the right treatment as per your condition.

Also Read: Carpal Tunnel Syndrome Symptoms, Causes, Diagnosis And Treatment


People who have nerve compression in arms and hands have higher chances of experiencing nerve compression at the trigger points of migraine. This indicates a genetic overlapping between migraine and nerve compression syndromes. Patients must get themselves diagnosed for booth to receive necessary treatment.

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