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      08-29-2011, 09:22 PM   #1
Seminole
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Pinched Nerve?

I have a doctors appointment on Friday, so I'll get a diagnosis then, but in the meantime I wanted to ask a few of you about what's been happening.

So it all started around the beginning of last week when I started to feel a pain in my left elbow. It was sore to the touch, almost like a needle was poking me. I just thought I slept funny or maybe banged it on something and didn't think too much of it.

Around Friday things changed. I started to feel a tingling in my arm, sort of like when your foot falls asleep. It lasted through Saturday with no change. Sunday is when things got even worse. I woke up and my arm from my elbow to my hand was numb. My pinky, ring and middle finger all had a pretty significant loss of feeling (I could bit on them hard enough to leave indents that lasted a few minutes and felt no pain). It lasted all day without much change. Last night while shopping for groceries I started to feel numb on my left leg and right around my lower back. That started to freak me out because nothing like this has ever happened to me before. The leg/back numbness went away later that night.

So I woke up this morning and everything felt better, my arm and fingers were still numb, but not as bad as yesterday. Sadly, as the day went on it got worse and right now as I type this it's just as bad as yesterday. I was just cleaning some dishes and actually dropped one that I picked up with my left hand because I can't tell how tightly I'm gripping something with it.

So does this sound like a pinched nerve? If so, based on what I found it doesn't seem like there is anything besides waiting it out (or surgery) to fix it. Anything else it could be? This started off as an annoyance, but the longer this goes on the more concerned about it I'm getting.
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      08-29-2011, 09:44 PM   #2
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Any back pain?

What were you doing prior to the numbness?
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      08-29-2011, 09:52 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by Quick6EF View Post
Any back pain?

What were you doing prior to the numbness?
Aside from that strange numbness, none. Prior to the numbness I wasn't doing any physical activity. I took part of the CPA exam on Sunday so I pretty much spent the whole week either sitting at work on the computer or at home studying.
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      08-29-2011, 10:44 PM   #4
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for your elbow/arm pain...

is it just along the inside(pinky side) of your forearm? does the tingling/numbness get worse with any specific activity? If you turn or have your head in a certain position does it increase/change the numbness in your arm? also, is the tingling just from the elbow down or up higher as well, along the bice/tricep as well.


It kind of sounds like cubital tunnel syndrome. A quick way to check, bend your elbow and hold it there for a about 20-30 seconds or just to when the tingling in your forearm and hand symptoms change/increase...if it does, straighten/extend your arm and if it goes away/decreases it's most likely cubital tunnel syndrome: basically your ulnar nerve is being impinged along the inside/medial/pinky side of your elbow. Usually happens with sleeping in a flexed elbow position, increased activity with a long period of elbow flexion, prolonged pressure on the nerve such as resting it on a table at work/school or armrest like in a chair or car.

Can be treated with Physical Therapy with mild to moderate cases, some sever cases do require surgery (once all conservative avenues have been exhausted).

Another possibility is a nerve impingement in the neck radiating down to your elbow, but it's rare for that just to be from the elbow down, usually that will start from the neck and travel down the entire length of the arm to the fingers. You are describing the C6-7,C7-8, C8-T1 cervical levels. But with this, certain head positions would cause increased tingling. This can also be treated with PT as well, depending on the severity there are other invasive forms of treatment.

Good you are seeing the MD, most likely they'll take an x-ray of the next just to check the spacing, they also might order a nerve conduction test. PT and some anti-inflammatories might also be prescribed.

Good luck


not sure about the back pain, highly doubt it's related to what's going on in your arm...glad that's resolved tho
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      08-30-2011, 01:40 AM   #5
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I got the same feelings as you, but i had it on my left foot, I started to feel a pinching on my lower back, and the next day a tingling/numbness in the outside of my pinky finger and after a couple of days in my foot, it is the worst feeling it the world, it took me about 8 months to recover, and sometimes I can not feel my pinky finger. the doctor said that it was a pinched nerve, and he gave me 2 shots a day for one week and I got better, but he told me that if it happen again I will need surgery.
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      08-30-2011, 09:43 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by geneatals View Post
for your elbow/arm pain...

is it just along the inside(pinky side) of your forearm? does the tingling/numbness get worse with any specific activity? If you turn or have your head in a certain position does it increase/change the numbness in your arm? also, is the tingling just from the elbow down or up higher as well, along the bice/tricep as well.

A quick way to check, bend your elbow and hold it there for a about 20-30 seconds or just to when the tingling in your forearm and hand symptoms change/increase...if it does, straighten/extend your arm and if it goes away/decreases it's most likely cubital tunnel syndrome: basically your ulnar nerve is being impinged along the inside/medial/pinky side of your elbow. Usually happens with sleeping in a flexed elbow position, increased activity with a long period of elbow flexion, prolonged pressure on the nerve such as resting it on a table at work/school or armrest like in a chair or car.
The numbness is strongest in my pinky and ring finger. Though this morning it was bad enough that I could feel it a bit in my thumb. The numbness is mainly from my elbow to my fingers, not really above it. Moving my head has no effect on it. Though if I bend my elbow all the way tightly I get a shooting pain down into my hand. Once I let it back out it subsides, but the numbness is still there.

I'm an accountant, so most of my day is spent sitting at a desk with my elbows rested either on the desk or a chair, so that makes sense about the pressure. But I've been doing this for over a year now, so for it to come out of knowhere like this now (especially when I'm working normal hours and not a few months ago when I was working 70+ a week) seems odd. I don't think it's sleep related since I sleep on my right side.

I appreciate the advice though, I'll try to keep weight off it and see if that improves it at all.


Quote:
Originally Posted by fercho View Post
I got the same feelings as you, but i had it on my left foot, I started to feel a pinching on my lower back, and the next day a tingling/numbness in the outside of my pinky finger and after a couple of days in my foot, it is the worst feeling it the world, it took me about 8 months to recover, and sometimes I can not feel my pinky finger. the doctor said that it was a pinched nerve, and he gave me 2 shots a day for one week and I got better, but he told me that if it happen again I will need surgery.
Good to know that a non-surgical remedy is available. Depending on what it may be I consider surgery a last resort.
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