In this study we aimed to identify the role of the body mass index (BMI), wrist index and hand anthropometric measures as risk factors for carpal tunnel syndrome (CTS) in both genders. Based on clinical and electrophysiologic diagnostic criteria, 154 female and 44 male CTS patients, as well as 150 female and 44 male age-matched control subjects, were selected. BMI, wrist index, hand shape index, digit index and hand length/height ratio were compared between the CTS patients and the control subjects for each gender separately. Mean BMI was found to be a significant risk factor for CTS in both genders. The wrist index was found to be higher in female (P < 0.001) and in male (P = 0.034) CTS groups than in the respective control groups. Logistic regression analysis revealed the wrist index to be an independent risk factor in females, but not in males. Shape and digit indices were significantly higher in female CTS patients than in corresponding control subjects, and regression analysis showed the shape and digit indices to be independent risk factors for CTS. In the male CTS group, the shape and digit indices did not significantly differ from their controls. Differences in the hand length/height ratio were not statistically significant in female and male CTS patients compared to their controls and it was not found to be an independent risk factor for CTS.