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Jono Drew, May 24 2023

The carbon footprint of carpal tunnel release surgery in the United Kingdom

Research highlights


The primary aim of our study was to assess the environmental impact of moving from a standard to a lean and green model for a carpal tunnel decompression. We objectively measured the clinical waste generated, the number of single use items and the number of sterile instruments required for a standard procedure, and then moved to smaller instrument trays, smaller drapes and fewer disposables. These two models were compared for waste generation, financial costs and carbon footprint. Information prospectively collected on seven patients in the standard model and 103 patients in the lean and green model in two hospitals over a 15-month period, demonstrated a reduction in CO2 emissions of 80%, clinical waste reduction of 65%, and an average aggregate cost saving of 66%. The lean and green model can deliver a safe, efficient, cost-effective and sustainable service for patients undergoing carpal tunnel decompression.

Methods & Results

For a complete summary of this data source and to see reported environmental impact values for studied products and activities, explore the HealthcareLCA Database.


Kodumuri P, Jesudason EP, Lees V. Reducing the carbon footprint in carpal tunnel surgery inside the operating room with a lean and green model: a comparative study. Journal of Hand Surgery (European Volume). 2023 May 24:17531934231176952.

Written by

Jono Drew

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