The purpose of this study was to determine whether a measurable decrease in isokinetic (dynamic) and isometric (static) hand strengths occurs in carpal tunnel syndrome (CTS) patients. Eighteen CTS patients and 20 healthy controls were included in the study. Isokinetic (eccentric and concentric) and isometric grip and pinch strengths were measured with a Biodex System 3 dynamometer (Biodex Medical System, Inc. New York). All strength measurements, except isometric and isokinetic (concentric/ eccentric) three-point pinch and isokinetic (concentric) tip pinch, revealed statistically significant differences between CTS patients and controls. Measurable decrease in hand strengths may exist in CTS despite normal manual assessments. Although both isokinetic (dynamic) and isometric (static) dynamometers are capable of detecting this decrease, neither technique seems better than the other. © 2008 The British Society for Surgery of the Hand. Published by SAGE. All rights reserved.