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During my time in Malaysia, I increasingly suffered from numbness in thumb, index and middle finger. As the time passed this pain constantly increased.
After my return to Germany, the pain forced me to get up at night up to 5 times in order to massage and shake my fingers. It was impossible to get a good night’s sleep.
In addition to this, it was unbearable to work on the keyboard. Even riding my bike was impossible.
So I consulted my doctor in Sindelfingen and told him about my trouble.
He advised me to get operated immediately. The band above the carpal tunnel had to be surgically cut. However, one the doctor's close relative's surgery was unsuccessful! Upon enquiry, I found out, that there was post operative inflammation, which led to destroying the nerve and thus causing paralysis. He assured me, that such case are exceptional and generally complications are rare and not to worry about it.
I have a great passion for working with my hands and fixing things myself at home as well. I am admittedly a kind of a "coward" so I started researching alternate ways of treatment.
On the Internet, I came across various methods and techniques to stretch the band above the carpal tunnel. This seemed logical as each tendon can be stretched while doing sports, achieving the same effect as the surgical cutting by decreasing the pressure on the carpal tunnel.
After understanding how this principle works, I realized that a device could achieve this. Being a mechanical engineer, I myself started to research the subject matter.
Very soon I realized that applying too much force is counterproductive. Like doing splits in gymnastics whereas constant and continuous stretching is crucial in order to perform a splits without injury.
This was the eureka moment for me in conceptualizing CarpaStretch®.
Shortly after that, the first prototype was created. After several iterations and improvements, the CarpaStretch® stretching device was close to its present version.
After 4 weeks of using the device I slept like a log at night and then after a short time I could again ride my bike. Today I am using CarpaStretch® 4-6 days/month for some hours in order to stay symptom free.
While discussing with my friends, I noticed that many of them are also affected with the Carpal Tunnel Syndrome. CarpaStretch® also helped them effectively.
So the idea of patenting this device emerged.
Following this, the search for suitable materials and suppliers, discussions with doctors and hand surgeons as well as optimizing of the usability of CarpaStretch® started.
Now our subjective assessments needed an independent scientific and objective stamp of approval. Hence a clinical trial had to be carried out.
Quickly it became obvious, that I couldn’t afford the enormous costs for such a study in Europe. Through my previous contacts in India, I asked a renowned Indian medical institute to carry out a study according to internationally recognized criteria.
The current interim results are very encouraging and I am confident to be able to publish them after completion of the study by late 2016.
My name is Dieter Heyl. I was born on 6th July 1957 in a small idyllic village on the border of the Black Forest in Germany. I am married and we have a 22 year old daughter.
I studied mechanical engineering at the University of Karlsruhe and started my professional career as an engineer graduate at Daimler AG. After finishing my trainee-programme, I worked there in different departments and plants with a main focus on quality management for over 25 years.
After a sidestep as Head of Material Testing and Management, I moved to India with my family for a 3 years’ assessment, where I headed the Quality Management of the local production plant as well as the Sales and Service Organization.
During the next 3 years, I was responsible for the set-up of a new plant for passenger cars and commercial vehicles in Pekan/Malaysia as plant manager.
Then moving back to Germany in 2008, I headed the Quality Management within the framework of the International Logistics Area.
After leaving Daimler AG in 2012, I was a member of the board of Messrs. KASTO, Achern/Germany (metal saws, sawing centres and storage systems) and was responsible as Chief Operating Officer for the two German production sites.
Since 2015 my primary focus is CarpaStretch®.