Median nerve changes following steroid injection for carpal tunnel syndrome

Michael S. Cartwright, David L. White, Samantha Demar, Ethan R. Wiesler, Thomas Sarlikiotis, George D. Chloros, Joon Shik Yoon, Sun Jae Won, Joseph A. Molnar, Anthony J. Defranzo, Francis O. Walker

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

66 Citations (Scopus)


Introduction: Neuromuscular ultrasound is a painless, radiation-free, high-resolution imaging modality for assessment of the peripheral nervous system. The purpose of this study was to use neuromuscular ultrasound to assess the changes that occur in the median nerve after steroid injection for carpal tunnel syndrome (CTS). Methods: Ultrasound and nerve conduction studies were performed at baseline and 1 week, 1 month, and 6 months after steroid injection in 19 individuals (29 wrists) with CTS. Results: Significant changes were noted in median nerve cross-sectional area (P < 0.001), mobility (P = 0.001), and vascularity (P = 0.042) at the distal wrist crease after steroid injection, and the nerve cross-sectional area correlated with symptom score and electrodiagnostic parameters. Changes in the ultrasonographic parameters were seen within 1 week of injection. Conclusions: These findings suggest neuromuscular ultrasound is potentially helpful for the assessment of individuals undergoing treatment for CTS, as typical changes can be expected after successful treatment injection.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)25-29
Number of pages5
JournalMuscle and Nerve
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2011 Jul
Externally publishedYes


  • Carpal tunnel syndrome
  • Injection
  • Median nerve
  • Steroid
  • Ultrasound

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physiology
  • Clinical Neurology
  • Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience
  • Physiology (medical)


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