We developed a hand brace and studied its efficacy and tolerability in patients with carpal tunnel syndrome (CTS). We randomized 83 subjects into a treated group, which wore the hand brace at night for 4 weeks, and a control group, which received no treatment. The primary efficacy measure was change in the Boston Carpal Tunnel Questionnaire (BCTQ) score. Secondary measures were Subjects' Global Impression of Change Questionnaire (SGICQ), median distal motor latency, sensory conduction velocity and amplitude, and neurophysiological class of severity. The treated group showed a reduction in BCTQ symptomatic score (from 2.75 to 1.54 at 4 weeks; P < 0.001) and functional score (from 1.89 to 1.48; P < 0.001). There were no significant changes in the control subjects. SGICQ documented improvement in all treated subjects (P = 0.006). No significant difference was found in electrophysiological measurements, but overall neurophysiological classification shifted to less severe classes in the treated group (P < 0.05). Thus, the study demonstrates that this hand brace is highly efficient in relieving symptoms and functional loss in CTS.
Copyright 2001 John Wiley & Sons, Inc.