Info

Test

Normal Result

Condition

Explanation

Electromyography

Normal conduction

Detects median nerve motor conduction delay of more than 5 msec.

The maximum latency difference (MLD) method, measured by centrimetric technique ("inching" up the arm) has a high predictive value

Tinel's sign

Negative test

Positive if gentle tapping over the median nerve at the wrist results in pain, tingling, or numbness in the median nerve distribution.

Compression of median nerve leads to positive test result

Finkelstein's test

Negative test

Positive if severe pain at radial styloid (process on distal end of the radium) results from flexing thumb against palm and finger flexed over thumb

Compression of median nerve leads to positive test result

Phalen's test

Negative test

Positive if unforced complete flexion of wrist for 60 sec results in pain, tingling, or numbness over median nerve distribution

Compression of median nerve leads to positive test result

Other Tests: To diagnose CTS, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration

(OSHA) requires at least one physical finding (positive Tinel, Finkelstein, or Phalen tests

or swelling, redness, deformity, or

loss of motion) or at least one subjective complaint

(pain, numbness, tingling, aching, stiffness, or burning), resulting in medical treatment,

lost work days, or transfer to another job. Nerve conduction studies, however, are

considered the best means to determine the presence of CTS.

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