St. Paul, Minn. – Boards of three medical organizations are in agreement on the most accurate tool for diagnosing carpal tunnel syndrome (CTS). While other diagnostic tools have been proposed for CTS, the electrodiagnostic tests are the preferred method among experts from these three associations. The latest practice guideline is published in the June 11 issue of Neurology, the scientific journal of the American Academy of Neurology.
Endorsed by the American Academy of Neurology, the American Association of Electrodiagnostic Medicine, and the American Academy of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, the guideline states that electrodiagnostic tests provide an accurate diagnosis of CTS.
Experts from each of the medical associations studied 113 reports on electrodiagnostic tests published since 1993 (the last time a CTS practice recommendation was made) to develop the current recommendation.
According to the chair of the CTS Task Force, Charles J. Jablecki, MD, the review of published clinical studies provides "convincing scientific evidence" that electrodiagnostic tests provide a high degree of sensitivity, (more than 85 percent), and specificity (more than 95 percent) and are therefore the choice of laboratory studies for confirming the clinical diagnosis of CTS. He pointed out that it is important to have a highly sensitive and specific laboratory test for CTS because CTS patients frequently require surgery for treatment.
The American Academy of Neurology, an association of more than 19,000 neurologists and neuroscience professionals, is dedicated to improving patient care through education and research. A neurologist is a doctor with specialized training in diagnosing, treating and managing disorders of the brain and nervous system such as stroke, Alzheimer's disease, epilepsy, Parkinson's disease, autism and multiple sclerosis.
For more information about the American Academy of Neurology, visit www.aan.com.
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Editor's Notes: The guideline is available at http://www.aan.com/professionals/practice/guideline/index.cfm.