Body Mass Index and Anthropometric Characteristics of the Hand as Risk Factors for Carpal Tunnel Syndrome

Sonja Hlebš, Ksenija Majhenič, Gaj Vidmar


Carpal tunnel syndrome (CTS) is the most common peripheral entrapment compressive neuropathy in the upper limbs. It is often correlated with personal factors of individuals, not only with certain medical conditions and jobs. The study aimed at clarifying the association of carpal tunnel syndrome with anthropometric characteristics of the hand and body mass index (BMI) as independent risk factors. A total of 100 subjects participated: 50 patients with electro-diagnostically confirmed CTS and 50 healthy volunteers without CTS symptoms as control group, each group including 37 women and 13 men. Height, weight, BMI, wrist depth and width, wrist index, hand shape index, digit index, palm length, palm width, third finger length and ratio of hand length to body height were assessed in all participants. To determine independent risk factors for CTS, multiple logistic regression was used. Wrist index and wrist width were significantly higher in CTS patients than in the control group. The estimated optimal threshold of wrist index for prediction of CTS was 0.69, above which the odds for CTS were estimated to increase 42-fold. Elevated BMI correlated with bilateral CTS in both genders. The study identified wrist index, BMI and ratio of hand length to body height ratio as independent risk factors for CTS.


carpal tunnel syndrome; risk factors; anthropometric measurements; body mass index; hand; adults; gender differences

Full Text:


Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.