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Simple fingertip test may help evaluate risk for CTS in breast cancer patients

September 22, 2015

The percentage of women with carpal tunnel syndrome increased from 11 percent at baseline to 16 percent within six months of aromatase inhibitor treatment. The average two-point discrimination scores worsened from 3.4 mm to 4 mm within three months, particularly among overweight women.

"Our results show that the two-point discrimination score worsens in some women receiving aromatase inhibitor therapy, providing a potential way to measure risk for carpal tunnel syndrome," says lead author Aditya Bardia, M.D., M.P.H., a clinical fellow at the Johns Hopkins Kimmel Cancer Center

Larger studies are needed to confirm the findings before they can be incorporated into clinical practice, he adds.

If further studies confirm the findings, patients at risk for carpal tunnel syndrome could be referred to a rheumatologist for therapy during early stages of the syndrome before surgery is necessary, or could have their medication regimen switched, says senior author Vered Stearns, M.D., associate professor and co-director of the Breast Cancer Program at Johns Hopkins.

Source: Johns Hopkins Medical Institutions