Unexplained loss of coordination in left hand after trauma
I'm a 20 year old female and I got into a nasty car accident 5 months ago where I shattered my pelvis, fractured my femur, and tore my aorta clean in half. All of those things have been resolved, however I have had a coordination issue with my left hand since the accident. I've done a lot of research and only found information on conditions that had pain, numbness or tingling as symptoms, and my doctors have no clue what is going on.
I had been going to hand rehabilitation and receiving occupational therapy, but saw no improvement. I have NO numbness, tingling, or pain anywhere on my left hand or arm. Strength is not an issue; the strength of my left hand is really the same as if not stronger than my right hand (I'm right handed). I also recently had a nerve conduction study done on my left arm/hand and they found nothing.
What I've noticed with my left hand specifically is an inability to hold glasses of liquid steady, but I have no problem driving with my left hand. When I wash my hair or clean my face, I usually move my hands in a circular motion, and my left hand seems to only want to go up and down, and struggles to move as fast as my right hand. I'm even typing partly with my left hand now, although the only finger that can type sufficiently is my index finger, and only when I flatten it out.
I am a musician, specifically a string player. I play violin and guitar and occasionally dabble in other string instruments. When I try to place my fingers onto the frets of the fingerboard, my fingers act like they don't know what to do. Specifically my ring and pinky fingers fidget and spasm when I try to put them down to form a chord. This is the real issue here!
I remember nothing from this accident. I had a large bruise and scrape on my left elbow, and my shoulder was a little achey (achy) for a while, but it was nothing that really bothered me and there was nothing wrong, nothing broken. They also said that I had a slight concussion, so we were thinking that it could possibly be a problem with my brain sending signals to my left hand?
If anybody can give me any clue to what might be going on, it would be highly appreciated. Music takes a major role in my life, I'm a singer-songwriter and music business student and I would like to use my hand to play my music in the near future...
If you need more information please let me know.
i'm 22 and when i was 17 i got in a car accident resulting in my left side being paralyzed. Although i have regained all use of my left side i had problems similar when recovering, did you hit the right side of your head? I also have carpultunel (spellings way off) in my hands and when it flares up i don't have much movement or am unable to grip things. I'm no doctor but these could be possibilities.
I'm not sure if I hit the right side of my head, but I know for a fact it's not carpul tunnel (Your spelling wasn't too off!). A bunch of musicians I know have had experiences with carpul tunnel and my doctor has already ruled it out. That's great that you regained the use of your left side, I can't imagine.
Kami- I recently had a less serious bicycle accident- in which I sustained what I thought was minor head injury ( I was wearing a helmet) and had no memory of the accident. I had a CT scan, that showed no significant damage. Several weeks later, while on a 2 week bike trip I began to experience symptoms like you describe, loss of coordination in my left hand. I initially noticed trouble holdiing a fork or other items w/my left hand and today I found out I could not get my fingers on my left hand to play the guitar or violin- particularly my ring finger on the left hand doesn't go where it's supposed to. I have scheduled an appt. w/my doctor. Have you learned anything more or had any improvement? Please let me know- Thanks-Biker124
Biker- I have been going to hand therapy, but there hasn't been much of an improvement and it's been nearly a year since my accident (June 14). I still have no diagnosis, and it seems as though I might not ever get an answer. My best suggestion is to just KEEP PLAYING. My issue is with my ring finger as well as my pinky. They tend to have minor spasms when I try to place them on my guitar strings. My therapist said it seems like something technical with my ulnar nerve, Is this similar to what you're experiencing?
It has not been easy. You have two options: (1) Sit around feeling sorry for yourself which will just about kill you if you keep thinking about how awful it is, or (2) you can look at the bright side: You're healthy, despite this [minor] bump in the road, and things could always be worse!
I know it sounds completely unfair and that there should be a better answer, but in the past year for me, I found that just picking up my instrument and having hope are what keep me able to deal with my situation,
Don't stop looking for an answer! You deserve to know what is going on and what exactly you can do to help it. I'm still always researching!
Best of luck, please update me if you get any answers! :)
Kami- Thank you for your prompt response to my question- I've never used this site before so I did not know what to expect. I am sorry to hear that you have not had any significant improvement or even a specific diagnosis. I don't think that I have spasms when I try to place my fingers, but they are not going where I want them to- it is frustrating. I have not seen any doctors yet, but I will keep you posted if I learn anything. I am hoping that whatever it is that it doesn't spread to my other limbs... Thanks again- Biker
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