The purposes of this study were to investigate the mechanical properties of the carpal tunnel and to examine carpal tunnel compliance as it related to gender difference. Twelve male and twelve female subjects without any neuromusculoskeletal disorders in the upper extremities participated in the study. Indentation testing was manually performed on the wrist volar to the transverse carpal ligament. Effective compliance was defined as the slope of the regression analyses of indentation force and displacement data. In the tested indentation force range (2.45-19.60 N), the displacement of females was 1.38 ± 0.25 mm, significantly smaller than that of the males, 1.82 ± 0.30 mm (p < 0.001). Regression analyses in the force range showed that the effective compliance for females, 0.075 ± 0.012 mm, was 26.3% lower than that for males, 0.101 ± 0.018 mm (p < 0.005). It was concluded that females have less compliant carpal tunnel than males. The gender difference in carpal tunnel mechanics may predispose females to detrimental compression of the median nerve and carpal tunnel syndrome.
- Carpal tunnel syndrome
- Transverse carpal ligament
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Orthopedics and Sports Medicine