The carpal tunnel is a space inside the wrist that can be seen as a tunnel from the forearm to the hand. Carpal tunnel syndrome occurs when there is an increase in pressure in this tunnel which compresses the median nerve. Numbness, tingling, pain and weakness in the thumb and index, middle and ring fingers can result. Initially, carpal tunnel syndrome symptoms come and go and can be relieved by wearing a splint at night while sleeping. If pressure on the nerve continues, symptoms may intensify over time. To prevent permanent nerve damage and alleviate symptoms, surgery to take the pressure off the median nerve may be recommended.