Frequency and severity of carpal tunnel syndrome according to level of cervical radiculopathy: Double crush syndrome?

Hee Kyu Kwon, Miriam Hwang, Dae Won Yoon

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Objective: The double crush hypothesis (DC) proposes that a proximal lesion along an axon predisposes it to injury at a more distal site along its course through impaired axoplasmic flow. The frequency and severity of carpal tunnel syndrome (CTS) according to the level of cervical radiculopathy were investigated to evaluate the hypothesis of DC. Methods: The frequency of CTS was investigated in 277 patients with C6, C7 or C8 radiculopathies and correlation between CTS and radiculopathy level was determined. We also investigated whether the degrees of abnormal sensory responses were more severe in C6, C7 radiculopathies and whether motor responses were more severe in C8 radiculopathy. Results: Thirty-nine patients were diagnosed with CTS and concomitant cervical radiculopathy at the C6, 7, or C8 root levels. The frequency of coexisting CTS was not statistically different according to the level of radiculopathy. The electrophysiologic results revealed no significant correlation between median sensory parameters and C6, C7 cases, and no relationship was observed between median motor responses and C8 radiculopathy. Conclusions: The frequency and electrophysiologic data of CTS analyzed according to cervical radiculopathy level do not support a neurophysiological explanation. Significance: Based on this study, the DC hypothesis could not be supported.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1256-1259
Number of pages4
JournalClinical Neurophysiology
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 2006 Jun 1



  • Carpal tunnel syndrome
  • Cervical radiculopathy
  • Double crush syndrome

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Sensory Systems
  • Neurology
  • Clinical Neurology
  • Physiology (medical)

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