A carpal tunnel release is a surgery that treats carpal tunnel syndrome, a disorder that occurs when the median nerve in the wrist is compressed. During a carpal tunnel release, the surgeon makes an incision in the wrist to expose the carpal ligament. The ligament is cut, which releases the median nerve. The incision is closed with sutures, and the wrist is bandaged and splinted to stabilize it. Sutures are removed after about 10 days.