Compression of the median nerve in the carpal tunnel (in hand) gives rise to the sensory and motor symptoms in the hand which constitutes the carpal tunnel syndrome.To begin with patients usually complain of aching pain in the median nerve distribution in hand, i.e., lateral 3½ fingers (thumb, index, middle and half of ring finger).
Subsequently, many people complain of paresthesias and pain in all fingers of the hand especially at night. Their position of comfort is hanging the hand over the side of the bed. Pain may radiate to the forearm and to the upper arm but not above the shoulder. Pain and paresthesias are most severe in the fingers, there is no exacerbation with neck movements and there is no neck pain. Sensory loss is more notable on the tip of the index and the middle finger rather than thumb. There may be wasting of the hand muscles supplied by the median nerve.