For the past two weeks half of my left hand has been numb (pinky and ring finger). I think this is could be due to a pinched nerve in my elbow that is causing the numbness. However something got me scared. This morning I got up and fall down. I didn’t feel dizzy. It was a fast event so I don’t know exactly what happened but it was like my left leg was not attached to my body. The leg just gave and caused me to fall down. Is there something more serious going on in my body?
Thanks for using the forum. I am happy to address your questions, and my answer will be based on the information you provided here. Please make sure you recognize that this forum is for educational purposes only, and it does not substitute for a formal office visit with your doctor.
Without the ability to examine you and obtain a history, I can not tell you what the exact cause of your symptoms is. However I will try to provide you with some useful information.
One condition that comes to mind is what you have mentioned above, a pinched nerve at the elbow, or what is called ulnar neuropathy. The ulnar nerve supplies innervation to some of the muscles and the skin on the side of the arm closer to the body (the "medial" forearm and hand), including the pinky and ring finger. Ulnar neuropathy is a type of irritation of the ulnar nerve.. Ulnar neuropathy causes numbness, tingling, or pain into the arm and hand on the side of the little finger. This is sometimes called "handlebar palsy", because it frequently happens in bicyclists who sustain repeated shocks and bouncing that can occur while holding the handlebars when riding. Other activities that involve stress on the hands and wrists may also irritate the ulnar nerve and cause ulnar neuropathy.
Another possible cause of your symptoms include a herniated disc affecting a portion of the nerves that eventually form the ulnar nerve (specifically the area involved would be a nerve root, the C8/T1 nerve root). Other areas that could be affected is what is called the brachial plexus, a collection of nerves near the collar bone and armpit that eventually move down the arm to form the nerves that innervate the pinky finger and ring finger.
It is difficult to tie your arm symptoms together with your fall; the distribution of the numbness in your pinky finger and ring finger for 2 weeks would be very unlikely to be associated with this fall. It is more than likely a coincident that you felt your leg give way and fall. However, if you continue to feel an abnormality in your leg, have other falls, if your leg gives way or feels otherwise weak or you have sensory loss, then a central nervous system problem (involving the brain or spinal cord) may be a possibility. A neuropathy, or nerve problem, involving several nerves of your body could be another explanation; localization to the peripheral or central nervous system requires further history and examination.
I recommend you be evaluated by your primary care physician/regular doctor. Based on his/her evaluation, he/she may choose to order additional testing and/or refer you to a neurologist.
Thank you for this opportunity to answer your questions, I hope you find the information I have provided useful, good luck.
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