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Association Between Carpal Tunnel Syndrome and Abdominal Obesity [Turk J Neurol]
Turk J Neurol. 2010; 16(4): 187-192

Association Between Carpal Tunnel Syndrome and Abdominal Obesity

Ertuğrul Uzar1, Atilla İlhan2, Alevtina Ersoy2
1Department of Neurology, Faculty of Medicine, University of Dicle, Diyarbakir, Turkey
2Department Of Neurology, Faculty Of Medicine, University Of Fatih, Ankara, Turkey

OBJECTIVE: Obesity has been suggested as a risk factor for carpal tunnel syndrome (CTS). Previous studies on the association of CTS and obesity have generally considered body mass index (BMI). However, the relationships between CTS and waist circumference or waist-to-hip ratio (WHR), which are known as more sensitive measures for abdominal obesity, have not been studied previously. In this study, it was aimed to evaluate the role of BMI and abdominal obesity in patients with CTS.
METHODS: Female patients who applied to the neurology outpatient clinics with pain, numbness, paresthesia, or dysesthesia in the hands were included. The patients were divided into two groups, according to the clinical evaluation, as CTS or non-CTS. CTS diagnosis was electrophysiologically confirmed in 44 patients. Thirty-one subjects who were not diagnosed as CTS electrophysiologically were recruited as the control group. Clinical findings, nerve conduction studies and anthropometric measurements (height, weight, BMI, hip circumference, waist circumference and WHR) of CTS patients were compared with those of the control group.
RESULTS: The CTS group had significantly higher BMI, waist circumference and WHR values compared to the control group (for each parameter, p< 0.0001). The rates of obesity in the CTS group were 55.8%, 47.7% and 34.9%, respectively, according to waist circumference, BMI and WHR measurements. In the CTS group, 16% of the patients, who were defined as non-obese according to BMI, were determined as obese according to waist circumference. In the CTS group, significant positive correlations were found between BMI and WHR and median-ulnar sensory interpeak latency of the fourth digit (r= 0.26, p< 0.05; r= 0.25, p< 0.05, respectively).
CONCLUSION: In this study, it was found that abdominal obesity is an important risk factor for CTS, and nerve conduction may be affected by waist circumference, BMI and WHR. In addition to general obesity, abdominal obesity may be an important risk factor for CTS.

Keywords: Carpal tunnel syndrome, obesity, waist circumference, waist-hip ratio, body-mass index.


Ertuğrul Uzar, Atilla İlhan, Alevtina Ersoy. Association Between Carpal Tunnel Syndrome and Abdominal Obesity. Turk J Neurol. 2010; 16(4): 187-192

Corresponding Author: Ertuğrul Uzar, Türkiye


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