(HealthDay News) -- Carpal tunnel syndrome occurs when inflammation affects tissue and a nerve that runs from the forearm to the fingers through a tunnel-like formation of bones in the wrist.

Long-term repetitive use of the hand can play a role in developing carpal tunnel syndrome, as well as person's age, heredity, hormonal changes and certain medical conditions.

How do you know if you have carpal tunnel? The American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons offers this list of classic symptoms:

  • Numbness, tingling or pain, especially on the thumb side of the hand.
  • A false feeling of being shocked, especially affecting the thumb and nearby fingers.
  • Pain that radiates toward the shoulder.
  • In severe cases, muscles at the base of the thumb become noticeably distorted.