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Recovery Tracker

Get Well Soon

Helping you to make a speedy recovery after carpal tunnel release

Recovery Tracker

Days/Weeks Post Op How you might feel Things you can do safely Fit to work?

1 - 2 days

You may be experiencing some mild discomfort around the incision at the base of the palm.

During this time you should focus on maintaining full movement in the fingers and thumb. Try to use the hand for light activities such as reading, holding a glass, or even light use of a computer keyboard. The hand should be kept up at times when it is not being used.


3-14 days

The pain at the incision should be settling although you will experience discomfort if you use the hand too heavily. You should have recovered full finger movement and any swelling should be settling quickly..

During this time, you should be able to start to use the hand for normal daily activities such as eating, dressing, brushing your hair and teeth. Pain should be used as a guide for what activities are performed and how long for.


2-12 weeks

Your stitches and dressing will have been removed. The scar may become lumpy, firm, tender and pink. The intensity and length of the period of ‘scar immaturity’ is very variable but it usually settles after about three months. It can be helped by massaging the scar and surrounding area firmly with the moisturising cream.


  • Once dressings and stitches are removed, it is safe to get the hand wet in a bath or shower.
  • You will experience pain at the base of the palm during firm grip making the hand feel weak.
  • This gradually fades until by the end of this period you should have recovered full power.
  • During this time, you should gradually step up your use of the hand, again being guided by discomfort.

12 weeks


If you haven’t had any complications to do with your surgery, and you’re still off work, it’s possible that you’re feeling anxious about returning to work and could do with a bit of help from your GP and your employer. Talk to them both about a gradual return to work.
If you’re off for too long, there’s a risk of developing problems to do with anxiety, isolation, and lack of confidence. These could affect your quality of life in the long term. Talk to your doctor about how best to avoid this becoming a problem for you..



When can I have sex?

For many people, being able to have sex again is an important milestone in their recovery. There are no set rules or times about when it’s safe to do so other than whether it feels OK to you - treat it like any other physical activity and build up gradually.

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