I never had a problem with numb hands until I gave birth to my third child over 11 years ago. It became a chronic thing off and on ever since. It is important to note that I had a "bad" epideral on the first try. My heart started to race and I almost passed out. The heart monitor was removed from the baby to my heart until they stabilized me or whatever was done to correct the problem. It turns out that epideral didn't take all the way, so I was given another epideral that did take. Everthing from there went smoothly, and I gave birth to a beautiful 10 pound baby boy. I woke up the first day at home with my hands asleep. Not an easy thing with a new baby, but they were easy enough to shake awake. I also had back pain and a large scar from my bad epideral. The back pain subsided after a year, but not the numb hands. When I spoke with my ob/gyn, I was under the impression that I took a known risk when I signed on for my epideral and there wasn't anything that could be done about it. At the time, since my back pain had gone away, I figured I could live with "sleepy" hands as long as I could wake them up. After all. the back pain was much worse. I had another baby 3 and 1/2 years later- no epideral that time. I had a healthy 10 pounder again. I had IBS the entire last trimester of both pregnancies as well as horrible heel spurs. Now all these years later, a neurologist tested me and diagnosed me with severe carpel tunnel. Only, I don't have reason for this diagnosis. I got double hand surgery this spring and I am not getting better. I was told I would have no more numbness. My wrists are sorer than ever, and, getting numb, as much, if not more, than before. Insights please?!
I am no Doctor.People with MS sometimes have more symptoms after anesthesia but these symptoms get better, MS usually does not present bilaterally. I started with my left side.
My hands hurt a lot but it is not MS but a bulging disc in my neck which is the cause. Inactivity actually makes it worse. The more active I am the better. Also I unconsciously tighten my hands I have to make them relax.
I am a 56 old, had three children. C-section all. I haven't any good reason for your numbness either. I call the doctor about mine. now I wait till he calls back.
I hope yours goes away. We could just be happy for any type of feeling.
Off to do my chores.
I'm not sure what your thinking or exact question is here. I'm not able to draw a line connecting your epidural to your hand numbness and I don't see anything that indicates a MS diagnosis, but I'm no expert.
A few things as I understand them:
Epidural anesthesia is injected into the epidural space. Nerves are 'bathed' in numbing stew, not injected directly. The needle doesn't touch the spinal cord so can't damage it. Besides, epidurals are injected WAY lower than the level that would interfere with your hands. Even if you stood on your head and the anesthetic floated toward your torso and shoulders, you would have trouble with everything below that level (including breathing), not just hand numbness/tingling.
If you had a EMG and/or nerve conduction study and it showed carpel tunnel, that is what you have (had). They do those to rule out other causes of hand/wrist symptoms that wouldn't benefit from surgery. I don't know what caused this syndrome for you. It isn't necessary to do repetitive tasks for it to develop. It's common in pregnancy but often goes away after. Any swelling or weight gain can trigger it. Sometimes it just happens randomly.
Did the surgeon say how long recovery would take? It hasn't necessarily been that long. I'm sure the incisions are healed -- nerves takes MUCH longer to recover. Surgeons are sometimes overly optimistic (unrealistic?) about recovery time (IMO). It may be a slower process than either of you anticipated. Maybe there is still enough swelling inside to cause continued problems. These nerves were also compressed for a VERY long time. Many people wouldn't have tolerated it for eleven years. It is possible to have enough damage that these nerves can't completely recover.even though they are now pressure free. There should be at least some additional recovery though and the surgery has stopped the progression of nerve damage.
After my own ct surgery I found this one exercise most helpful. Place hands together in 'praying hands' position (flat palm to flat palm) in front of your forehead. Slowly lower forearms as low as possible toward waist, keeping palms flat together and close to body. Hold this stretch for a relaxed ten count, slowly return to original position. Ten reps at a time at least three times a day to regain full range of motion.
I certainly think you can anticipate further improvement. It might take several months, even a year or two, and one day you might realize the hands are a lot better. You might check with the doctor about taking a supplement that improves nerve function (vitamin E?) and some additional physical therapy modalities. I do think time (not worry) will be your friend here.
Thank you so much for your e-mail. That was most helpful. I will be patient. Like you said, I have waited 11 years before getting surgery so I have dealt with this for awhile. You are so right about my hand surgeon. It seems like he is a surgeon salesman. "He's done hundreds of surgeries. Could do them with his eyes closed. I'll be 100% in no time if I get the surgery and he has 100% satisfied patients." I was irritated after my post op appt. because my hand surgeon was very defensive when I told him about my progress, even though I was not attacking. He was not sympathetic. He just went on and on about his "work". Blah! I guess that is why I got pretty turned off. I didn't feel like I could discuss anything with him. Hence the inquiry on MEDHELP. Thanks again!
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