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nerve damage due to IV
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nerve damage due to IV

I recently was in the hospital and had an IV and while they had to try a few times, one of these time it hit a nerve. The IV ended up in the other arm but a day or so after I got out of the hospital I started to have somwhat sharp pain in my wrist and down into the meaty part of my thumb.
I'm wondering if this will go away eventually or should I see someone about it?
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Avatar_n_tn
The duration of recovery from your condition would ultimately depend on how severe the nerve damage is.  Ideally, it is always best to have it looked at by a competent neurologist as early as possible.  In the meantime, some OTC pain medication can be taken (assuming you don't have any ulcers/gastritis or pain medication allergies) to alleviate the pain. Just make sure you take them an hour after a meal.
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Avatar_n_tn
Thanks for the reply. The reason I was in the hospital was for a bleeding ulcer, so  Advil is out of the question. But I will try some Tylenol after a meal and see if that works.
Do you know if not using the hand will help? Or some topical medications? Any ideas?
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Avatar_n_tn
Hi,
You can have Tablet.Ranitidine 150 mg 1/2 hr befor food and then after food you can have a OTC painkiller if pain persists.The gastrirtis will be less or completely avoided by taking T.Ranitidine .
Goodluck.
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Avatar_n_tn
Thanks very much! The only other question I have is if this kind of nerve problem will normally go away in a few weeks?
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Avatar_n_tn
You know I just looked up Ranitidine and see that this is for your stomach. I am currently taking Prolisec OCT for the after treatment of my ulcer.
What I was trying to find out was if the nerve damage in my hand due to an IV sticking in to a nerve while I was in the hospital was going to go away by itself or if I should see someone? Do you know that? :-)
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Avatar_n_tn
As I have mentioned before, recovery from the nerve damage is dependent on how severe the injury is, which cannot be assessed from our standpoint.  You could opt to observe for the moment whether the pain would decrease or resolve within a few weeks with concomitant pain medications.

If the pain is bothering you, you should go to a neurologist as soon as possible to assess your injury.  He will be in the best position to answer your query on how long your pain will last and provide you with appropriate advise on treatment options.
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Avatar_f_tn
I have been a nurse for over 20 years.  I have probably started thousands of IV's.  I have never seen anyone with permanent nerve damage from an IV.  I have seen nerve injuries from arterial lines though.
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Avatar_n_tn
Permanent damage can result when a needle point makes contact with a nerve.

“Nurse, I feel an electric shock going down my arm.” Would this patient complaint mean anything to you when you insert an IV catheter or draw blood? This feeling of shock is a classic symptom when a needle point makes contact with a nerve. It could result in permanent nerve injury — and malpractice litigation involving the nurse performing the procedure is not uncommon.

The two nerves most often injured during a venipuncture procedure are the radial and median nerves. The radial nerve passes along the thumb side of the arm, from the shoulder down into the wrist area, and is in close proximity to the cephalic vein. In a venipuncture procedure, the cephalic vein is often the vein of choice for many clinicians. The distal three inches of the radial nerve, just above the thumb, is the area most often injured during the insertion of peripheral IV devices.

The median nerve is the largest nerve in the arm. It runs inside the antecubital fossa and passes through the forearm into the palm of the hand. When nurses are drawing blood from the antecubital fossa or inserting peripheral IV devices, they could contact and injure this nerve. Insertion of IV catheters into the superficial veins of the inner aspect of the wrist above the palm of the hand can result in serious injury to the median nerve and carpal tunnel syndrome.

If a patient complains of an electric shock-type sensation radiating down into his or her hand as the needle is being inserted, the appropriate intervention is to remove the needle immediately. The outcome will be minimal nerve damage without permanent injury; however, if the nurse continues to advance the needle farther into the nerve, a permanent, progressive, and painful disability resulting in reflex sympathetic dystrophy (RSD) or complex regional pain syndrome (CRPS) can result. Patient symptoms can include a mottled and cold hand and forearm, hypersensitivity to temperature changes, excessive nail and hair growth, and the inability to lift heavy objects. CRPS is diagnosed by patient history and nerve conduction studies. Treatment options include long-term pain control with narcotics, multiple nerve blocks, and even implanted morphine pumps, as well as splints, casts, and TENS (transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation) units.

Best practice mandates nurses avoid areas of high-risk nerve injury by using landmarking techniques. The three-inch area above the thumb and the three-inch area on the inner aspect of the wrist should always be avoided since the radial and median nerves can be superficial in these areas. The risk of permanent nerve injury outweighs the benefit of IV insertion in these areas.

Standards of Practice

The Infusion Nursing Standards of Practice can be used in court to determine whether a nurse delivered appropriate infusion care to a patient. The standards state “site selection should avoid areas of joint flexion.”1 The wrist and antecubital fossa are areas of joint flexion. Insertion of peripheral IV catheters into these areas for delivery of infusion therapies can be determined to be deviations from the standard of practice. These deviations, with documented injury to the patient, can be contributing factors in a malpractice verdict against a nurse. When necessary, the physician should be notified that an alternative vascular access device will be required to safely administer the IV medications.

Nerve compression injuries are also related to infusion therapy. These occur when a patient sustains an infiltration of a large amount of IV solution into the tissues. The IV fluid in the tissue increases the pressure within the tissues, resulting in compartment syndrome; and the duration of the high tissue pressure determines the amount of permanent nerve damage. Nerve compression is indicated when a patient’s arm is infiltrated and he or she complains of numbness and tingling within the swollen area. The appropriate nursing intervention is to stop the infusion and notify the physician immediately. An emergent fasciotomy, which consists of two surgical incisions along the entire length of the arm, is required to relieve the increased tissue pressure. The incisions are left open; and, in some cases, penrose drains are used to aid in fluid drainage. A second surgical procedure is required to close the wound, and the patient will have extensive scarring of the forearm and hand.

Permanent nerve injuries are preventable by avoiding high-risk superficial nerve areas for venipuncture and by frequently documenting IV site assessments. Nerve injury related to venipuncture is one of the most common areas of nursing malpractice in which the nurse is identified as the primary defendant. Remember — listen to the patient. Remove the IV device immediately if the patient has symptoms of nerve contact during venipuncture, and avoid high-risk nerve injury areas.
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Avatar_f_tn
I'm very aware of what you are saying.  My point is....I have never seen this happen.  It is extremely rare.
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Avatar_n_tn
What was the outcome?  It is two months later.

I just had this happen to me last week.  Any feedback as to length of your condition would be interesting.  thanks
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Avatar_n_tn
I too was recently in the hospital.  Male nurse put in a BIG IV (I was dehydrated & needed fluids).  The insertion REALLY hurt.  More than it should have.  I've had IVs in the past, but the pain of putting one in didn't compare to other times.  I was in the hospital 3 days.  On the 3rd day, the IV started to bleed, but I was finally released.  Now, a month later, I still have difficulty turning my wrist and lifting things with my hand in certain positions.  It gets worse when I use my wrist/hand more.  Do I have ANY recourse?  The hospital I was in gave very shoddy treatment..... ~lisa  
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Avatar_f_tn
I had surgery on Feb 6th, with the IV on My right wrist.  My thumb and fingers whent numb right away but I did not know any better so I did not say anything.  The IV was in for 3 days and my thumb and forefiinger are still numb to this day.  As I use my hand to work on the computer I find that I get shooting pains throughout the hand that be the end of the day are shooting up to my forearm.  The viegn is swollen and I am not sure what to do.  My orthepedic surgion says to just wait and when I tried to get to a neaurologist he said he could do no more that whe my surgeion was doing.  I am getting scared as this is effecting my work out put.
Thanks Karen
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Avatar_f_tn
I know it's hindsite now but you really should have said something.  It's standard practice to immediately remove any IV that causes pain or other symptoms. I know you didn't know any better.   I'm very sorry for your problem.
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Avatar_n_tn
I can relate to how you feel the reason is a simular sitution happened to me. On the 24th of this past Febuary I had an ovarian cyst repture and the nurse needed to draw some blood and start  an iv of course she tried several attempts before she found a spot on my left hand not to far from my nuckles and until this day it is very hard for me to use this hand it feels like pins and needles with numbness also cold all the time and my veins start to swell and boy does this hurt thats why I like to talk about this problem so i can get a feed back on what to do with this promblem. I'm sorry you had to experience this too.
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Avatar_n_tn
I went to the ER for allergy issues.  I had an benedril IV drip started in my left arm on the inside of my elbow.  placing the IV was not a problem, but when the removed it, the pain was tramendous.  It has only been 6 days now sense this happened, but I am worried after reading all this info.  I have pain in my shoulder, and above and below the insertion point of the IV.  My left arm is very weak.
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Avatar_n_tn
just curious to everyone who posted on here about nerve injuries from needle sticks.  did you get better?
Thanks
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Avatar_n_tn
Yep...it took about 6 months...but at this point...I no longer have the electric shock feelings coursing down my hand and fingers when I move my wrist.  
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Avatar_n_tn
I went for a routine blood draw to get my semi annual check up.  the venipuncturist has been doing this for years.  she could not have been quicker but the when the needle came out of the arm from the blood draw I was white as a sheet and crying from the pain radiating from the inside of the elbow to the thumb.  After reading the posting, i guess the medial nerve was hit.  there is about a 5 inch area just above my wrist going toward my elbow.  i get spasms like someone is drawing up the nerves on a spool.  then, it passes.  I sure hope this goes away soon.  I thought i might be crazy until i read eveyone's comments.  it has only been 5 days.  thanks pat
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I've been in IV nurse for 22 years. I have never had one patient mention any of the problems that have been mentioned above. It would have to be EXTREMELY rare to have any form of injury that not only is long lasting, but permanent. If an IV becomes sore due to inflammation of the vein from irritation from the cannula against the vein wall or the strength of the drug being given, it can be painful but is usually short lived (maybe a week or so). Sometimes the inside of the vein becomes inflammed and causes a clot to form (thrombophlebitis) but the clot is superficial and while painful should not cause permanent damage.

On the flip side.  I also have a chronic serious illness which requires constant IVs. My veins have become difficult to access (I now have a permanent access implanted under my skin) and sometimes it took many attempts to insert an IV.  Uncomfortable... most certainly, agony...definitely not, sore for days after...yes, permanent pain or damage...no.

I did hear one story once of someone having a blood test and getting nerve damage. It was immediate, obvious and apparently permanent. (story was also told to prevent phlebotomy staff from practising on each other.

Hope this helps

Chirley

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Avatar_n_tn
Mine healed after 4-5 weeks total time from injury.  The most pain was the second week.  The neurologist I saw said that was normal.  The inflammation was putting pressure on the nerve.  Advil and vitamin B were the recommendations, but time was the only thing that healed all.
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Avatar_n_tn
I had neurosurgery on October 6, 2008 and apparently a needlestick (not sure what it was for...maybe an IV) on my left wrist, about one inch above my hand (on the thumb side) caused similar problems to the ones described on this board.  You can still see where the needle went in...there's a round swollen spot, about the size of a dime.  I had a large 3 inch bruise next to it, traveling up my forearm.  My thumb, index finger, middle finger and the tip of my ring finger are "tingly" and extremely sensitive to the touch.  When I woke from surgery, I told the doctors about it, but they didn't seem concerned so I assumed it would go away.  Five weeks later and there's no improvement.  When I saw my doctor on Wednesday, he suggested I see a hand surgeon to determine the extent of the damage.  After reading Travana's post, I am really worried...again, how are all of you doing and how long did it take for your symptoms to go away?  How do you know if the damage could be permanent?
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660872_tn?1238644845
Hi, that sounds like the site of an arterial puncture.

Arachnaphob
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Avatar_n_tn
I think it was an arterial puncture...the neuro otologist thinks it nicked or pinched the radial nerve, since it is affecting my thumb and first two fingers.  He wants me to see a hand surgeon but I can't get an appt. till the end of the month and the neuro otologist is on vacation this week.  It seems to be getting worse and the palm just below my index finger is now swollen...I was thinking about making an appt. with a neurologist instead...I am starting to really worry....
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Hi,  Years ago I used to have to take arterial blood samples as part of my job.  I was always very wary of doing it because of the risk to the artery (spasm) and nerve that run in the radial area.  There was a test we were supposed to do to make sure there was an alternative blood supply to the hand just in case the artery was damaged. This was called the Allens test. I only learned of this AFTER I stopped working for that organisation. I still shudder at my total naivete and lack of training I was given. I was very lucky that no one (to the best of my knowledge) suffered any ill effects. On the plus side, if this was your problem I think the effect would have been immediate and devastating, so perhaps you have some nerve damage that requires a little bit more time to mend. Best of luck to you.

Chirley
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Avatar_n_tn
Hi,
I did some research on the net and I think you're right...it sounds like I had a radial artery puncture during the surgery for gas analysis and they somehow nicked or pinched the nerve.  I read that the procedure can cause nerve damage to the radial nerve but couldn't find any info as to whether it's temporary or permanent!  It's been nearly six weeks since the surgery...!
Lyn
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I have to weigh in here.....also being a nurse...I have to agree that nerve damage/injury from a standard IV would be VERY rare.  There would definitely be more of a risk with an arterial line....or a test for arterial blood gases, where blood would have to be drawn from an artery (usually in the wrist).

If indeed there was a nerve injury as a result of an IV insertion, it should gradually improve.  Certainly, seeing your doc if symptoms are severe, or are interfering with your daily life...would be recommended.

Also, something was mentioned that is very important for anyone to keep in mind that has to have an IV for any reason.  After insertion...the IV should generally not HURT, other than minor discomfort initially after insertion, or, when certain medications are infused (ie Potassium...very rough on the veins and painful to infuse).  If you have an IV, and are experiencing more than just very minor discomfort after insertion, or during the administration of meds....ask for the site to be changed.  The IV site should not be swollen, or red either.

Lyn...since it has been that long, I would suggest you being seen by your doctor.  Nerve injuries with arterial blood gas procedures DO happen, while not super common.  The GOOD news is....the nerve should eventually heal itself...it just may take more time than you thought.  If you aren't seeing an improvement iin your symptoms...get to your doc.  While you are waiting for it to heal...certain Rx'es can help to minimize your discomfort. I did have one pt who experienced some nerve injury after having an arterial line, and while he was waiting for it to heal, he was prescribed Neurontin, which helped him with the pain quite a bit.

Best of luck.
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Avatar_n_tn
thanks for your respone!  i am typing this with one hand as now my index finger is swollen as well!  my hand is definitely getting worse; i think it may be from over-using it.  now that i'm feeling so much better (6 wks after my surgery) i'm doing more and more around the house.  i have an appt. w. a hand surgeon this wed. (my neuro otologist suggested it though i'm surprised he didn't recommend a neurologist.)

my husband is at a meeting where coincidentally a group of anesthesiologists are also meeting.  one of them told him my injury was probably caused by an arterial line in the radial artery at the wrist.  he said in thin patients, the radial nerve is very close to the artery here.  he suggested getting a splint and trying not to use my hand too much.  i'm planning to get a splint today.  needless to say, i'm rather upset as it would have been helpful to know this early on!  i would have been more careful if the doctors had advised me and it would have been a lot easier to do so during the fist six weeks!  the day after my surgery i told them about the "tingling" and the bruise was huge but they pretty much ignored me.

regarding medication, i am on gabapentin, a generic neurontin.  i am taking 300 mg 4 x per day but it doesn't seem to help much...maybe the hand surgeon will suggest increasing the dosage...  
...thanks again,
lyn  
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Avatar_n_tn
WEAR THE SPLINT AS OFTEN AS YOU CAN!  I have  PERMANENT nerve damage from an IV insertion EIGHT years ago.  You know your body more than anyone.  If it doesn't feel better - TELL YOUR Dr.!
Try not to lift things or hold things with that hand.  Have people help you as often as they can.  I've gone as far as replacing faucets so I don't have to turn knobs.  It's very painful.  I took Neurontin and other drugs too.  Surgery is not an option for me.  Generally, it should take no more than 6 months for the nerve to regenerate and heal.  If it's more than that you may need to resolve that it won't get better.
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Just wanted to add my situation to the mix.  Post-op from my second....yes SECOND tonsillectomy...I had nausea and dehydration and went to the hospital for fluids and anti-nausea medication.  The nurse put the touniquet on my arm above the elbow and left it there while she prepared everything for the IV catheter and in the mean time, my arm turned red and my hand began to go numb.  I told this to the nurse, who just said, "i'll be done in a second."  As she inserted the IV catheter, I felt a sharp shooting pain down my arm and into my hand and of course mentioned this, but she continued and drew blood from the catheter and taped it in and then finally removed the tourniquet.  I got feeling back in my hand, but since then (a week out now), I have a weird numbness/tingling in my wrist below my thumb and it is also weak and a little painful at times.  The worst part of the whole story is that that nurse forgot to flush the IV line and gave me a FULL IV line of air prior to any fluid.  I am in the medical field (but work with animals) and do IV catheters on animals all the time and know that you always flush the line first.  I immediately brought it to the nurses attention that I was hearing air bubbles in my shoulder and she was giving me all air, but it took her the whole line before she actually stopped it.  No one at the hospital seemed concerned by any of this at all.
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Avatar_dr_m_tn
Yes you have marked quite a few things, as you have seen & gone through these things .You identified them, many of the patients are silent sufferrers due to low quality para medical staff in hospitals. It is always important to choose a proper hospital and be quite clear when you are given IV lines, catheters to ask for an experienced person.  Take care!
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Avatar_n_tn
I would like to know if the earlier posters are still in pain?

I had a blood draw this week- same thing- as she took it out and sharp pain down arm. Then i was passing out- they had no where for me.

I recovered as fast as possible and beat it to my car. Arm began to feel weird, cold, etc.......called them and asked them to fill out an incident report. They were like, "HUH?" played dumb.

Well, the finally did.

Still in pain today but much better. I can lift things now. But tingling is there and some numbness off and on.

I would lke to know if the other posters are OK bcause I am where they were....scared out of my mind.

Well, thank you!
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Avatar_n_tn
Hi all,

I'm a 26 year old woman who had an IV during a wisdom tooth extraction procedure 8 years ago. After they pulled out the IV, the vein they had inserted it into was suddenly much more apparent than it ever has been before - bright blue and you can see it all the way up my arm. Since the procedure, I randomly get these intense cold feelings that extend from my shoulder along that part of my arm and down to my thumb. My thumb also goes numb occasionally. It hasn't gone away at all since that time.

I have no idea what's been going on, but am wondering if it could possibly be nerve damage from the IV. It sounds like there are a few medical professionals and people with similar experiences on this site. Can anyone help me out here?
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Avatar_m_tn
I had a baby 3 weeks ago, and when they put the iv in my right arm there was a tremedous burning sensation, which they said was normal for insertion, only after the insertion every time i moved my wrist i had a sharp burning pain in my wrist, it was worst than labor contractions!! they told me that they prob were close to the nerve. so after i left the hospital i started feeling a numbing shock down my right arm, and now 2-3 weeks later whenever i move my arm the wrong way or bend down to pick up something a have a dull to burning pain/ache in my arm, after reading these comments now im freaked out, will it just take a while to heal or should i see the doc?
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Avatar_m_tn
I am a nurse, stuck many people many times. I've been in the hospital have had many IVs and Blood drawn but 5 days ago a lab person hit my nerve in the bend of my elbow and the dull ache radiates up towards my collar bone and down my forearm to my thumb. First I thought I was crazy but now I know I have nerve damage it is like electrical shocks going down my arm when I move it a certain way or if there is any pressure on my antecubital area. I see a doctor on wednesday.
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Avatar_m_tn
Famous last works: "Hmmm, it doesn't seem to want to adavance."

New rule, new IV nurse: If it doesn't seem to want to advance, please don't try to shift the IV ever-so-slightly and press harder.

I found this thread after visiting Medical Imaging of Fredericksburg today and having an IV inserted before a contrast CT scan. Yes, you guessed it; the aforementioned nurse, after I already pulled back a little during the initial *****, push it in harder into I jumped in pain...

She was going to try the other arm, but after I started to ask about a shock of pain and didn't bend my arm when asked, she was nice enough to go get the ol' pro, who really did it right...rubbed some stuff on bend of the arm (orange/brown cleaning stuff, perhaps?), run some more stuff, was fanning it a bit (is this some stuff that brings the vein out?), put it in with precision, and put some cardboard cover thing over it with a see-through window, if you know what I mean...suspect she really followed the book after the SNAFU.

Long story short, slight tingle in the fingers, but sharp pains in the elbow area and up the bicep.

The best way to describe is that it feels exactly like the feeling you get when you hear "there's going to be a little pinch." We all know it's a bit more than a pinch with an IV, but that feeling of them pushing it in, that's the feeling I have now in my arm...10 hours later!

(which is how I stumbled upon this thread...wondering for how long this will last).

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Avatar_f_tn
I have been a nurse for over 25 years and until today I would have to agree that is very rare. This  just happened to me today while having routine bloodwork drawn. Wow, a shooting electrical type shooting pain ran down my arm into my thumb. They immedialtely removed it but it has been a few hours and my lower arm feels cold and is slighlty swollen. I hope it goes away soon! Ibelieve!
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Avatar_f_tn
I too went in for routine bloodwork.  The man drawing my blood was very cocky and arrogant.  He promised that he would find a vein with one stick and I would feel no pain.....he was a professional and had been doing this for over 20 years.  He actually drew back his hand and rammed it into my arm (I have never seen anyone take blood this way).  I instantly felt a sharp pain, electrical shock sensation and a burning near my wrist.  I complained of the pain but he didn't respond.  After he finished he told me that he should go buy a lotto ticket because it was obvisously his "lucky day" because it's almost impossible to hit a nerve, but he did.  I understand that accidents happen, but his attitude was bad and now my fear of needles is worse.  I am now on day two and the pain at my wrist seems to be getting worse.
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Avatar_m_tn
i was injured in hospital from a gravol shot in arm misplaced and it severed my radial nerve i come to you with this warning the doctor gave me neurontin whatever you do do not take this medication unless you take seizures-the side effects could be fatal there is a ongoing lawsiut against pfizer for pushing this drug as a drug for nerve damage also people have experienced depression to the point of suicide many drs will give you this medicine in place of a drug to help for pain look online you will see what i mean take care of yourself and each other this lawsuit covers many areas of lawbreaking-in canada or the states please dont become another statistic
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Avatar_f_tn
I had gall bladder surgery in mid-June and the nurse put the IV in and didn't get any blood flow, so she took it out and put it in the other arm. After the surgery, the pain from the surgery was nothing compared to the pain in my arm from the misplaced IV. It has now been over a month, and my arm still hurts and is weak, and really bothers me several times a day. I am wondering if she hit a nerve? It doesn't seem to be going away. I have asked a couple Dr's. about it, and one said "maybe she hit a tendon?", another Dr. said "Maybe she hit a nerve?" but neither Dr. seemed at all interested in getting to the bottom of it. At the time, I just assumed it would gradually get better, but now I am wondering???? Anyone else had this experience? If so, how long did it take for the pain to go away?
Debbie
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Avatar_f_tn
I am a resident MD at a good teaching hospital, and had an apparently temporary nerve injury related to simple IV placement in my wrist while delivering my baby in February.  And yes, like brehamideh, that pain was worse than my contractions at the time. This isn't a trivial thing.

The nurse who placed the IV (which otherwise worked fine) simply looked at me like I was nuts because the sharp pain and shock down into my hand made me cry.  I told her about it, told the OB, told the nurses on the next few shifts, and then even when it persisted after the IV was removed after about 12 hours of being in place, there was just a general response of, "hmm, that's weird."  

For about a week after I was home the pins and needles remained quite painful, slightly better with cold compresses. Then the feeling slowly progressed to happen with local contact at the site of insertion, and now just minimal residual numbness in the thumb and radial aspect of the index finger (5.5 months later!)

To the nurses out there saying this is extremely uncommon, it sounds like it's not all that rare.  You must just be good at what you do.

To everyone else who's gone through it, I hope your symptoms improve or resolve, too.  Beyond immediate removal, I'm not sure what else can be done to minimize this. Of course, then you have to risk getting another one placed somewhere else.
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Avatar_m_tn
i got it pretty bad during apendectomy, or before i should say, in the left wrist area. and sadly tonight(after 2 yrs. later) i i put my hand between my head and the chair and apppearantly hit the spot my nerve got stuck with the iv, and now my hand is getting numb, does not feel fluent, strength and overall control is not there. is this just temporary because the spot got hit? anything i can do to help this? do i have any medical or legal rights of this even after 2 years?
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Avatar_m_tn
July 2010 i was at work using a cable winch it broke the end of the cable punctured the underside of my forearm it bled for 2 days x-rays came back neg that day no broken bone my arm bruised from my wrist to my elbow all my fingers swelled it hurt so bad  work comp made me wait to see one of their Drs i went and seen him he put me right in therapy and gave me some pain meds its been 2 months thumb is still swollen every time i use my arm it starts to hurt very bad from my wrist to my elbow and my thumb. It hurts to use it to drive and just rest it on the table. Should i get a second opinion? it this Dr sounding like he is giving me a fair evaluation or just doing me wrong i was expecting a radio-graph or MRI or something to make sure there is no severe damage in there  
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Avatar_n_tn
I was going in for a steroid injection in my back and the dr attempted to start the IV.  Tried left arm, couldn't get it, tried back of right hand, couldn't get it - he then tried my left wrist - the underside.  I have never had someone try to put an IV here.  It was like he was digging, it was horrible pain and I was crying, he pushed in deeper and he hit something - I'm assuming it was a nerve - because pain shot thru my hand and up to my shoulder.  I swore I shot fire out of my middle and ring finger - they went rigid and it hurt so bad I screamed.  People in the waiting room heard me.  There were three nurses standing around trying to console me, one even said she saw the reaction in my fingers.  It is almost a week later, and I am having lots of pain in my hand and fingers.  I went to touch something and the pain shot thru my middle and ring fingers again.  I am seeing them again tomorrow for my second steroid shot - and I will be sure that they fill out an incident report in case there is perm damage.  I'm hoping it will eventually go away, from what I have read it can take months.
But yeah - it def does happen.
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Avatar_n_tn
i had a baby 6 months ago and my hand was swollen the iv was in my wrist till this day i cant move my wrist for anything..it hurts so bad it feels like my thumb is popping out of place..i scream if pick up something,,,,,i am in a wrist brace..
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I had surgery on July 27th and as part of the routine pre-op, I had an IV inserted.  Everything went well with surgery but I had some lung issues so I ended up in ICU.  Four days after surgery, I complained to the ICU nurse about my arm hurting but he did nothing. Finally, I got someone to listen to me at shift change and they immediatly moved the IV.  The IV had infiltrated.  I had swelling and brusing 18 cm long and 3 cm wide.  The iron they were giving me was run too fast causing the infiltration.  Now it's 15 weeks later and I still have a 2.5 cm bruise.  My doctor prescribed PT to move the iron pool.  I've been going for 2 weeks now and no progress noted.  My arm hurts constantly and I'm having grip issues.  I can't decorate cakes anymore because I can't pipe.  When working, I constantly have to stop using my mouse because of pain.  My index finger hurts all the time and I have to pop it constantly to get any relief.  It wakes me up at night if I happen to bump my finger on my pillow.  I'm trying to figure out if I need to consult a hand doctor or wait until PT is done.  This really *****.  I feel so much better as far as the original pain that caused me to have surgery but my arm is killing me.  I also have two scars from the square tape they put over the IV.  The bruise is bad enough but I will have a permanent reminder of this IV.  :(
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I have read all the post here and I am here to tell u that from getting a arterial blood gas done about 5 times at a 3 week hospital stay, one of the RT's did nerve damage on my left hand from my baby finger and the finger next  to it have been numb and stiff along with the same area of my hand.  This month makes the 7 months with no improvement. All my Neuro Doc aid to exercise it.. Since then he's not addressing it after I tell him about it again.. My next appointment is Fed 17 and I am going to make sure he run some test..  
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Avatar_m_tn
after reading all these posts i had to add that i too had an operation last week, but as the anethestist was putting in my iv, he hit my radial nerve and i felt this horrible shock go thru my whole hand.. i told him and he said i hit your radial nerve.. he still left the iv cannula insitu.. after they took the iv out of my wrist i got lightning schocks down my thumb.. very sore at times too.. has antone recovered from this sort of damage? i am also a nurse but have never experienced any thing like this !
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I had an IV for surgery 6 months ago. The nurse had a little trouble getting the vein but I don't remember much pain. I was dehydrated at the time. When I received medicine in the IV before the surgery, I felt a sharp pain and my hand jumped off the table. That area of my hand and wrist were pretty sore for several weeks after surgery and I'm still tender in the area and have occasional pain with bending, etc. 6 months later. I'm wondering if a tendon was irritated or something?
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Here is the reason why nurses are saying this phenomenon is rare, but patients are saying it is common: When the nerve pain persists for weeks or months, the nurse who inserted the needle will never hear about it.  

A person who experiences intense nerve pain during needle insertion may be viewed by the nurse as someone who simply has a low tolerance for pain.  If a hospital were wary about potential lawsuits, the hospital would certainty not want the nurse to talk with the patient to address the patient's complaints.  
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I had Nero surgery 2 weeks ago. I have difficult veins and they usually put an iv a day in my veins because they stop working. On the 2nd to the last day in the hospital, I complianed to the nurse my IV had infliltrated. It was about 5 AM. the nurse said they would be in shortly. About 2:00 PM I asked if they would be doing anything with this IV because it was swollen and sore. they looked at it again and said someone would be in. About 4:00 PM the IV nurse came in and used an ultrasound to put another one in the other arm. I thought that was the end of it till about 3 days ago. My arm where the IV was located it started to get sore deep in my arm and there is a bruise which has now appeared to the surface where the site was located. The bruise gets smaller and bigger at different times. Using it seems to make it worse and ice seems to help the pain. I am not sure how long I should deal with the pain or complain to my doctor. I don't want to seem like a hypocondriac. I just wonder how long it will last or if it will get worse.
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I have a high tolerence for pain.  I recently went in for a c-section this past Monday and have never had trouble receiving an IV because I have good veins.  The nurse tried twice and missed and went to my other wrist.  She tried again and hit a nerve.  It instantly felt like my pointy finger and thumb were on fire.  The pain was intense.  I jerked and screamed out and then yelled for her to take it out which she did immediately.  It took about five minutes for the searing pain to subside.  I looked at her and said something like, "I am not a wimp, but you hit a nerve and the pain was that bad!".  She believed me and I was laughing.  It is a week later and I still have electric shock like pins and needles in the same area, especially when I put pressure on my wrist where the IV had been attempted.  No severe pain, just a very uncomfortable feeling.  I have had nerve damage before and it was gone in six months and I believe this will be too.  Guess I will have to wait and see.
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Avatar_dr_f_tn
Hi there. This appears to be an inadvertent iatrogenic nerve irritation or injury which could be neuropraxia or axonotmesis or neuronotmesis according to nerve damage classification. The nerve usually recovers if it is a neuropraxia  or axonotmesis. This may take a few months and some residual tingling and paresthesia may last due to cross over of nerve fibers during regeneration. If the nerve irritation is severe, you may consult a neurologist for pain killers or tricyclic antidepressants or anticonvulsants like gabapentin. Hope this helps. Take care.


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I had routine bloodwork done on April 15th. I've got a relatively high tolerance for pain (have piercings and tattoos, and all) but have NEVER experienced pain like this. She inserted the needle into the inside of my left elbow and as soon as the needle went in, I had searing white hot pain from my bicep down into my thumb and forefinger... the pain was centralized in my wrist. The nurse didn't take it out, but rather shifted the needle to try and subside the pain, it didn't. When she was done drawing the blood I was on the verge of passing out and nearly vomited in the room... I apologized for acting like such a wimp, she got me crackers, and we laughed about it. I had no idea how bad it actually was.

It's three days later and the pain isn't constant, but it will catch me off guard when I turn my wrist the wrong way, shift positions, or grab something (even small, like my cellphone.) Sometimes it's just a dull pain but sometimes it's so intense I'll cry out or get completely derailed from whatever I'm doing.

It sounds like what most people here are describing - I'm curious to know how long it took for the pain to resolve itself, or if I should contact my doctor's office? The nurse and all the staff there are wonderful and I'm not interested in 'malpractice' suits and what not... but I do want this to be over with!
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is there anyone here from the uk, i would like to discuss experiences with you please.
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yea well it happend to me  to. went for oral surgery and the anethesia guy who was hindo or indian or something  drilled me i told him he hit a nerve (ive had nerve damage in right arm before) and he kept drilling and moving side to side i started cussing  they nocked me out woke up throut hurt worse then the loss of teeth still hurts a week later  no fealling in top of my forearm from elbo to back of my hand (left arm)
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I was an ER tech for 8 years and have probably started over a 1000 IVs. I have also done ultrasound guided IV insertion and some of the nerve bundles can be seen on the ultrasound. It is very possible to hit a nerve while putting in an IV or drawing blood especially when drawing from the AC (fold in the arm/elbow area), especially on the inside of the arm closest to the body. If the person feels an electrical shock feeling down the arm then that's definitely a nerve being hit and the needle MUST be removed. Adjusting the needle will not work. It has to be removed. It's extremely painful for the patient when you hit a nerve. There is no way you can actually SEE the nerves when inserting an IV unless you are doing it with an ultrasound probe. Even with the ultrasound probe, you can only see the large nerve bundle and not the smaller ones. So there will be instances where you hit a nerve and it can't be avoided.

Since I worked in the ER I was never able to see the outcome of people who have had a needle come in contact with a nerve so I don't know how long the pain lasts. I do know that physical therapy for nerve damage can be very beneficial because they have exercises that help stretch and work the nerves and rehabilitate them back to normal.

I have a few exercise instructions for arm nerves if anyone wants a copy. Just send me a personal message and I can email it to you. If you do these nerve stretches once a day then they can really help with the pain.
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I have RSD / CRPS II in my left hand. Once you have it, it can spread and you can get it from nurses/doctors taking blood or injections. Trust me I've had it for years from a car accident and recently gOt it I'm my right hand wrist from an injection in my radial nerve below my thumb. It is THE single most painful thing in the world. From the RSD association it's rated worse than that of cancer patients. So YES hitting a nerve during IV can cause nerve damage. More severe in people with RSD already.  
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Your best bet is get it checked ASAP. An MRI can detect RSD and it's best to get treated in first 3 months. Unfortunately after my accident my hand was super swollen and painful but dr.s screwed up n waited 9 months. There is no cure, I'm disabled for life. I'm 26 ( was 24 @ time of accident ). Check out RSDSA.org. That's the association and they are great. There's nothing fun bout this. I've lost all use of left hand bc it was swollen 19 months before it started going down some and my muscles, tendons etc. developed atrophy. It's compete hell. Constant burning pain like some1 has a lighter and razor blade to my hand 24/7. Now it's in my right wrist and the double pain is unbearable.

Get it checked ASAP trust me you DON'T want this. Good luck.
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I posted my nerve damage post IV experience awhile back and just wanted to add an update.  After numerous complaint calls to the hospital which got me no where, I tried scheduling an appointment with different neurologists, but when I mentioned the "malpractice," they all refused to even see me because they were afraid to hurt their relationship with this hospital.  I finally found one that would see me and he did multiple tests and determined that I did not have any permanent nerve damage.  I never went through with suing because it was such a hassle and I was in the middle of getting married at the time.  I was unable to extend or really use my right arm normally for about 4 or 5 months though and even to this day, my right wrist feels like it needs to be "popped" often, but other than that, it is back to normal.    
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Just had cardiac cath. No problem there,  ut prior to test when tech went to put IV in a LIGHTING BOLT. went down my thumb.  I SCREAMED. AND SHE took it out and called another tech/nurse to do it. A week lAter i cant use thumb or touch area around injection site. I called hospital they gave me patient care to have aomeone call me back.  Should i have reported to Doc who did test, it was not his falt. It feel worse everyday. Im i being a baby. Sixty years old with hundreds if injections twenty surgeries. And never had this happen





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Just had cardiac cath. No problem there,  ut prior to test when tech went to put IV in a LIGHTING BOLT. went down my thumb.  I SCREAMED. AND SHE took it out and called another tech/nurse to do it. A week lAter i cant use thumb or touch area around injection site. I called hospital they gave me patient care to have aomeone call me back.  Should i have reported to Doc who did test, it was not his falt. It feel worse everyday. Im i being a baby. Sixty years old with hundreds if injections twenty surgeries. And never had this happen





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i to had a iv put in my wrist for dehydration-i told the nurse something is wrong and she ask me if i was scared of needles-i had a electric shock like pain from my wrist to the elbow and from my wrist to my knuckle above my thumb which hurt the most. i told her to remove the iv or i would remove it.she said this has never happen before and i said remove it because it is really painful. she removed it and did the iv on the other arm.i couldn't drive with that arm or open doors -use the computer or work for 9 months. it took her a least 15-20 seconds before she took the iv out. i have talked to a lawyer and we are going forward with a law suit.
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i to had a iv put in my wrist for dehydration-i told the nurse something is wrong and she ask me if i was scared of needles-i had a electric shock like pain from my wrist to the elbow and from my wrist to my knuckle above my thumb which hurt the most. i told her to remove the iv or i would remove it.she said this has never happen before and i said remove it because it is really painful. she removed it and did the iv on the other arm.i couldn't drive with that arm or open doors -use the computer or work for 9 months. it took her a least 15-20 seconds before she took the iv out. i have talked to a lawyer and we are going forward with a law suit.
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I have had terrible pain and a prickling sensation in my entrire left arm for 6 years following an IV in the elbow pit I was wondering if anyone has sucessfully suied for this type of injury?
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How silly to say that you have been nursing for X years... What does that have to do with anything? There are bad nurses out there that DO start IVs wrong. They DO cause damage. Clearly you are at a good facility that only hires the best and trains their staff well. I hate to be the one to break the bad news but not all hospital staff take pride and care when they are working with patients. I live in a town with HORRIBLE hospital staff and I was seen at Mayo Clinic in MN. Mayo told me I have nerve damage in my wrist from an IV. Rare? Not as much as it should be. Glad to hear those you work with are in good hands.....
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Wow, I had never heard of this until my sister was in the hospital last year and she had nerve damage in her left hand from an IV.  Then I had surgery twice in the last 4 months, one in March and another in July, and with the 2nd one, have nerve damage in my right hand due to an IV.  I was in the hospital for 11 days, 4 of it in ICU, and only remember the last 4 days of my stay.  The last IV that was inserted was done on 7/28 and it took over 10 minutes of slapping my hand to pump up the veins enough to get a needle in.  When it was inserted, the pain in my hand and arm was immediate and severe.  My arm and hand were cold and I complained of shoulder pain as well.  The IV was left in until 8/1, when I was released.  When it was removed, it felt like someone had cut my hand off.  Now, 8/24, three weeks later, I still cannot use my thumb and index finger.  My thumb doesn't bend at all and my index finger is too weak to even push phone numbers.  I have an appt Monday with a hand surgeon to assess the situation.  I sincerely hope this is not permanent as I am an accountant and make a living with my hands.  My poor sister's is permanent and is losing even more use of her hand as time goes by.

To all the nurses out there who claim they have never seen this - BULL CRAP.
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I am an ER nurse.  A pre-op nurse who was very experienced and very nice stuck me with their new IV's (which she stated she was not that comfortable with) in my left hand near my thumb and index finger.  I had immediate pain that shot down my pinky and ring finger and traveled up to my shoulder.  I splinted my hand and took ibuprofen but have had no relief after 2 weeks of immobilization.  I don't want to get her into trouble but I am going to tell my oncologist who works for the hospital to see if he can get me into a neurologist.  I certainly don't plan on suing but I believe the hospital should let me see this specialist and treat me on their dime, not mine. The pain is excruciating.  I have started IV's and a few times hit people's nerves and always immediately withdrew the IV, got them a compress to alleviate the pain and reported the incident.  Nurses aren't perfect and sometimes, no matter how well you follow procedure, things happen.  However, an incident report should always be done and whenever a patient has a bad reaction to any IV stick.  I hope the nurse who took care of me filed one.  
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I am in my 6th month of agony from an IV that was started in the ED.  I was admitted for cellulitis, discharged in 2 days and within 2 days I was back in the hospital for a superficial blood clot (SVT) at the IV site. I have shooting pains in my hand, fingers, thumb and up my arm.  My left arm, especially my left wrist is swollen about 1 inch bigger in diameter than my dominant right arm.  I have been to vascular surgeons and neurologists.  No meds are working to correct this pain. By the time night time comes, by arm is throbbing from my hand to my shoulder.  Hoping I can find a good physician in the area to figure this out.
I have researched and know the risks of nerve damage, they are real.  I did complain to the nurse, who was wearing one glove to please stop probing.  He had already tried in the other arm, unsuccessfully.
This "fishing" practice has got to stop. If I did not have a 104 fever I may have been more vocal!!!
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Avatar_f_tn
I had a horrible experience in the ER with a nurse who was angry about something when she was starting an IV in my hand on Oct 16. It's possible it was at my housekeeper who took me there. I was in severe pain/vomiting/diarrehea/fever. The triage nurse kinda yelled at her that I was not bumping anybody and I was not an emergency. My panicked housekeeper yelled back. Then, someone in uniform grabbed the wheelchair and brought me through big doors to a doctor.  I was very dizzy also.
Over a hour later this woman showed up to start IV on the back of my hand near my thumb.  She shoved and poked it in and out and pushed it all around as I begged her to stop hurting me.  She glared at me for an instant but never said a word.  She left it in the vein with no drip.
I was finally admitted.  On the floor, a nurse gasped and removed it immediately.  It had been in for hours. My arm is very cold, and hurts.
I have read all the comments/questions/ replies.  Thank you for the information.  I will see a neurologist.
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I had an IV in the back of my right hand (I try never to have anyone do any IV's in the back of my hand because years ago someone went in on the same site as where they put it in the ER the week before and to do this day I have nerve damage in the left hand.  Now the right hand - I was just admitted 3 weeks ago and I had an IV in the back of my right hand and it infiltrated after a day and went into numerous other parts of my arms, but the vein in the back of my right hand has no nerve damage, but the veing where the 'tube' goes into is so extremely swollen and painful and I'm not sure why.  This has never happened to me before. I've had dozens of surgeries so I'm not foreign to IV's.  The pain of the vein does not travel up my arm, really just the back of the hand.  Any thoughts to if this will heal or stop being painful to the touch?
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Hello, not sure who has had this experience, but back in March this year after several cannulas in my right wrist, and the result being swelling, I had another cannula inserted in the left wrist along the thumb line, but as soon as the insertion and the flushing commenced I immediately experienced extreme pain in the wrist like a brick was thrown on my wrist, the pain was excruciating and brought me to tears in an instant, infact the pain that I felt from this was worse than the abdominal pain I originally was brought to hospital for in the first place.
Now we are in November and I experience debilitating pain and can't hold anything like a jug or saucepan, the pain is dull and throbbing and happens daily.  I find some temporary relief from inflammatory gel, but once it wears off it still throbs, there is no burning or tingling just throbbing pain on the upper wrist along the the middle finger line.
Could someone please let me know what is happening with my wrist if possible.

I would appreciate any light on the condition if any.

Donsal
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Could you let me have the exersizes? My husband had a bowel resection 3 weeks ago , with all the morphine drips, IV's etc and now has terrible pain in one arm - the doctors say possibly nerve damage, but don't seem concerned. He is in a lot of pain - I really mean A LOT . We are looking for any help we can get
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Avatar_m_tn
I had bypass surgery in April, and spent 5 days in the hospital.  Two weeks later I developed cardiac tamponade and had a second, emergency surgery spending another 5 days in the hospital. I had an IV in my left hand near the pinky and the 3rd finger. A couple of days after the surgery the IV site became very painful, I had the nurse remove it.
Since then my pinky, the next finger, and edge of my hand to the wrist has been numb, tingley, and at times painful. It's been 6 months and it hasn't changed. My Cardiologist is aware of the situation he said it will fade as time goes by. Any thoughts would be welcome.

Pete
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I went to ER Monday for broncitis symptoms and had spit up some blood.. Nurse inserted an IV into my left wrist and the pain was so severe I jumped and the needle came out. Yes, it is like an electric shock. Immediately she got another nurse to put the iv into my right inner elbow area and did not even feel it. This is a pain you have to exprience to understand.Now I am getting a red line that is running from it and I can not touch or its very painful. Reading these posts has got me concerned, but, helps also. Should I talk to the Hospital about this?
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I've had nerve damage in my left arm for 25 years. When I had blood drawn for my marriage blood test, the nurse pushed in the needle and it stung. The place where the needle screwed into the syringe apparently was stripped and the needle broke free while in my arm. I think a nerve must have been nicked. She said that something had seemed wrong when she was preparing the needle. I should have taken that statement and filed a lawsuit then and there. But I was getting married and didn't want that time of my life to be ruined by legal battles.

All this to say... it did not get better, ever. I have had tingling in that arm from the elbow to my fingers ever since and cannot wear a watch or bracelet on that arm. It falls asleep easily if it is bent or if I cannot rest it on an armrest while sitting. I am grateful to have full use of my hand and fingers, but I just about hyperventilate any time I have to have blood drawn.

On top of this, I had an IV put in at the ER two years ago, same arm. I cried out in pain as it was shoved in, and now I have pain from my elbow up into my shoulder and my left chest. Two years have passed and it's no better. I have to prop my arm on a pillow at night to ease the pain.

Sorry to be such a sad sack, but I just don't believe the nurses on this thread saying "it doesn't happen often." I see now that I'm not alone. It must happen quite a bit.
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I had an IV for fluid and anethesia for an outpatient procedure on Tuesday, Nov. 19th.  I am thin and have veins that tend to roll.  The nurse used a numbing agent and fished/probed/pushed for the vein on my wrist, below my thumb.  It hurt, but it wasn't the electrical jolt that everyone is describing.  She blew the vein and started in another place and finally got the IV in.  Everything was fine for the next week except for severe bruising - especially on the underside of my wrist.  Then, on Monday, Dec. 5th, I woke up in extreme pain - throbbing from the hand to my elbow.  They did a doppler to rule out phelebitis and suggested using heat and tylenol (I might be pregnant and cannot take anything else).  The pain is not getting any better, and it is actually starting to radiate to my upper arm.  Would this still be possible nerve damage, or could it be something else?  I'm trying to decide whether I should see my neurologist or go to an orthapedist.  It hurts to use my arm, straighten it out, and to open/close my hand (along with the constant pain).  Any suggestions?  The Tylenol and heating pad isn't doing much - just taking a little edge off.  I have a 3-yr-old.  This is definitely interfering with my everyday living!
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I was in ICU  a few weeks ago with dka. I got a drip in my artery in my left hand, I was told of the bruising I would get once it was out and right enough it bruised right down my arm, It was sore for 3 weeks. The bruise soon went away and I was fine but now a few days later the meaty part of my thumb has bruising under the skin and is very very painful, the pain is spreading down y wrist and round my thumb Do you know what it could be?
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Avatar_m_tn
HI. 9 months ago i gave birth to my son. during labour, the nurse who administrated my IV missed the vein. i mentioned that it wasn't placed properly  but after missing the vein she continued to pierce the vein byway!and that it hurt like a son of a b*%$. she didn't remove it. 2 days at home i had sever fever for 4 days! i went to the ER and the doctor told me had i waited another 2 days i would have organ failure! my hand had swollen like the foot of an elephant!  Infiltrated IV, blood poisoning he called it! All the other doctors tried to call it cellulitis. i was hospitalized for 15 days! had Iv therapy 10 more from home. it took my body another 4 months to recuperate! the pain left in my arm is excruciating! i'm going through the ringer now, from DR. to DR. but no one want to associate to the IV?!! and what i had to go thru with a 2yr and newborn at home?
maybe the reason why u never heard about it is bcuz when it happens its kept under wraps!?
when they brought me back up to the maternity ward to heal, my nurse, paid me a visit, to see her mistake. she didn't evn apologize! i'm sure she didn't feel comfortable to let her colleagues kno about it either!
back to my arm: 9 mnths later, i can't hold or rock my son to sleep, very movement i do hurts. sometimes i feel like sawing it off or maybe worse, have it amputated one day!  i've been reading up on this subject but theres not much out there. i only know from sites like these what ppl r going thru. cuz nurses and Dr. and hospitals keep this under wraps for no law suits!
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My husband had this happen about 5 years ago. He still has numbness in his pinky and ring finger and up to his wrist. Went to specialist who said they could do surgery but no garantee it would help and could make it worse. He could lose all feeling in his hand. Also, how would these nurses know about it when no-one knows this is going to still be a problem 5 years later? And good luck suing a hospital!
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My sig. other has nerve damage from a phleb. who didn't back the needle out when he should have (1-1/2 yrs now!))  Would be most grateful if you could send the email w/exercises to:
***@****
Thanks.  
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Is there a book dealing with protocol and standards for blood draws in the arm?
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I had an IV attempt to my wrist when I went in to give birth 28 years ago. The catheter would not advance but the Nurse kept insisting it would go in. I begged her to please stop as it was extremely painful and it was going nowhere. I had planned natural childbirth without any pain meds ,so I was not squimish about pain. The IV pain was unbelieveable!! Another Nurse came and started one on the other arm. I did see a Nuerologist, I do have damage, and to this day I suffer from pain to the site. My husband knows that if I ever need hospitalization and I can't speak for myself he is to tell that IV attempts not be made in that area.
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Last night the nurse put in iv at inner elbow area and right away I felt severe burning electric pain shooting down to my hand. My forearm felt it was being melted. I yelled "I think there is a nerve there. It's hittin a nerve." The nurse took it out right away and said I'm sorry, that never happened before. All of the pain and burning remained for about an hour then started to diminish. Now I have hypersensitivity to the lightest touch and pain when squeezed. also a lump about 4 inches from my wrist that hurts. Don't know how this will turn out. I'm not lookin for a law suit. I just hope it will be ok, and if not that I get the proper care. And to you nurses out there that never had this happen to you, the nerve pain I mean, let me tell you it is real. Feels like lava streaming down your arm. Oh and forgot to mention my arm and hand is shaking today.Thanks for listening.
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How is your hand? I just had surgery to remove a neuroma.
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It is called complex regional pain syndrome type 2. Typically there will be an associated neuroma along the superficial radial sensory nerve.
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Avatar_m_tn
Happened to me!
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Avatar_m_tn
I was admitted to the hospital and given an Iv in my wrist, the next day was transfered to another hospital. They left my IV in. When I got to the other hospital they did nothing with my IV, didn't run fluids or anything. It was painful and I expressed that everytime I was asked " how are you doing". On  day 5 my wrist was extremly sore And starting to turn red around the IV. I then told the nurses either they were taking it out or I was. So finally they took it out, my doctor then comes in to look at my wrist. There was then puss like pocket at the IV entry poitn, she squeezed it and alittle puss came out. That was almost 4 months ago and my wrist is still hurting alot, I can't lift heavy things, turning a door handle or any sudden movement is VERY painful. First thing in the morning is the worst. I don't know what to do, I know I should go to the doctor but I really can't afford it.
Anyone have ideas as to what is wrong with my wrist and what to do to fix it?
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I was admitted into the hospital and diagnosed with colitis.  For three days I was administered constant fluids through IV in my left inner arm right at the joint area.  On the third day I told them that the IV had been leaking during the night.  The nurse cleaned around it and taped the IV up in a different angle and told me they would have to but another one in later because they can't stay in for more than 4 days.  After leaving the hospital I developed a superficial blood clot from wrist to shoulder.  I have had 3 ultrasounds and many doctor's office visits.  I am now being prescribed Coumadin daily and I have to inject myself twice a day in the stomach with Lovenox.  Does anyone know if I can sue the  hospital for the costs of these additional medical bills due their ignoring the leaking IV?
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Avatar_f_tn
I am having a similar situation. I had a baby 3 months ago and where they had the iv on my wrist to the side...there is a huge lump like a ball?? I am not sure if its my bone or what but its been 3 mths and not going away. it does make my left hand weaker, it hurts if my wrist is turned a certain way and the ball actually looks gross on my wrist. Not sure what it is but if anyone has any info....I want to sue the damn hospital bc I don't think this is normal!!
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2194509_tn?1338409532
I know you wrote your comment a few years ago, but I'm sorry, I no longer trust nurses, nor doctors.

I was in hospital a few weeks ago and I knew something wasn't right with my IV, from the get go. I tried telling several day nurses and night nurses, plus a doctor this...they all ignored me. On the second night, I thought I was dying. The pain had got to the point, where it was shooting up my arm, into my shoulder and neck. Still, they ignored me. I spent the whole night, hallucinating, crying out in pain constantly. I pressed the button for a nurse...an hour later, one came. It seems they were too busy laughing and talking loudly (I heard them clearly), to tend to patients. They would not fix the problem, so I promptly refused further treatment and discharged myself that next morning. But, the damage was done.

I now cannot use my left hand, when I used to be ambidextrous. I still get shooting pains, terrible cramps, where my thumb and forefinger go misshapen. The tips of my fingers are numb and tingle constantly.

Why I went to the Emergency Department, was I desperately wanted treatment for my severe Venous Stasis. My left calf had swollen to 3 times its size. Their stupid IV antibiotics made it worse and nearly killed me in the process. They took most of my blood for tests, yet, no results given. Apparently, I don't have the rights to the results. USELESS IDIOTS!!!

So, I'm sorry, but I don't care how long you claim to have been a nurse. If you're incompetent, which if you haven't heard of Venous Stasis and do not realise that antibiotics are the worst thing to give a patient suffering from it, then you clearly are. No offence...

Medical "professionals" need to stop blowing their own trumpets and actually learn a little about medical conditions. Or, get out of the profession...simple!
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Avatar_m_tn
If it's rare, than I'm one very unlucky person. It happened to me twice in 5 years. Once in each arm. The second time, after giving birth to my daughter, the pain lasted for 7 months and while I don't feel the chronic  nerve pain anymore, I still have muscle deterioration because I was not able to move my arm for so long.
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Avatar_f_tn
My husband was in the hospital recently for an accident....he received an IV in his left hand that burned his hand and forearm down to the nerve. He still has scars from that and he just went to see the doctor about it last week for his last checkup and the doctor told him his has permanent nerve damage now in that hand because of the damage the IV did to his hand. He had 2nd and 3rd degree burns on his hand and arm from an IV. Obviously, someone didnt know what they were doing. In then end he has permanent nerve damage.
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Avatar_m_tn
HI there,
would love excersises for arm nerve that you have!!  

My father had a prostatectomy about 6 wks ago and felt some numbness and pain in his arm after iv insertion...he's having more pain now that goes up to his shoulder and a little towards chest (collarbone) and is wondering what to do.  Any info would be appreciated!!  
Thanks!
Amanda
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Avatar_n_tn
Why do some nurses get an iv first time,and other's make numerous attempts. Apparently I'm a hard stick,and after 5 times being poked, it is utter misery. My daughter has been an er nurse for 20 years,and she said there is no excuse for that. I have been told I'm dehydrated,that my veins roll,and on and on,when they can't get it. They have put the iv in places,that swelled up and am bruised everywhere. I have also had wonderful nurses,that get it on the first try. What's up with that? Lack of skill? Dread having a procedure,because seems like the luck of the draw. Also,have felt the electric shock pain,but didn't last.So painful.
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3184083_tn?1347405743
Since there are so many nurses in here...

I had neurosurgery a month ago (I have Chiari and I had a shunt put in from my old incision to my abs). My surgery was at 8:30am and went well, but at about 3am, the nurse came in to put the meds in my IV (the same IV that was put in prior to surgery) and she noticed my hand was swollen (infiltrated), so she put it in the other hand (my left). My husband said it was about 4-5 times the size, it actually freaked him out, but I was so out of it, I didn't remember. When I was released the next day, I asked about it and they said it would go down on it's own over the next couple days. It took several weeks to go down, but it's still quite a bit larger (not double, but somewhere in between) and my right hand and about half way up my elbow is all a reddish/purple. The swelling sometimes goes down with Ibuprofen (since it's an antiinflamatory), but the bones in my hand hurt and are bruised (the bone on the outside of my wrist, the bones in the center of the top of my hand near the IV site, and now the bones below my thumb are bruised, swollen, and painful.

I talked to my gp about it a couple weeks ago and he had an ultrasound done of my upper extremity (arm pit and upper inside arm) and they reported that they saw no clotting and the blood was flowing fine. My gp messaged back and said that the ultrasound viewed no blockage and I should just wait, but while the swelling is about the same, the pain in the bones is increasing.

I've been elevating it since it happened and I often wrap it in my electronic hot pad... cuz that's what they told me to do.

Any suggestions?
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Avatar_f_tn
I had RSD due to a jammed hand from a door. After many kind of treatments I has surgery. They deflated my lung and took nerve out of spine. IT Worked. Good luck
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Avatar_n_tn
I wrote years ago about having nerve pain and being unable to use my arm after poor IV insertion that hit my nerve.  Someone asked whether any of these people still had problems after it happened.  It took a few months after it happened to be able to move my arm more normally, yet still with some pain.  It has been 3 years now and my arm is pretty much normal now.  I do feel the need to pop that wrist often and occasionally I feel slight weakness or slight nerve pain, but it is rare.  
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Avatar_m_tn
It just happened to me. During a catheter procedure a nurse started an IV in my left wrist. The pain was immediate and did not lessen. I begged her to remove the needle and use my hand, as I have had several IV's there and they have never bothered me. There was also a lot of blood. She refused, saying soon I would be in surgery and the pain meds would help. Surgery was delayed, and it was over an hour until I was taken to surgery. I was crying and begging the nurse to please reposition the IV. Now I have no feeling in my left thumb. It is completely numb. My repeated requests for help were denied. The nurses were too "busy".
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Avatar_f_tn
Interesting there are nurses on this site claiming this is rare bc if you take a look at how long this comment list is I think it's obvious it's NOT uncommon! Nurses should try other access sites vs the radial PERIOD. I'm an ICU nurse so I know.

I just had an out-patient procedure and the first place the nurse placed the IV was my left radial. Immediate, severe, shooting pain numbed my wrist and hand. Shocked the hell out of me as well as my nerve obviously. I demanded the nurse remove it and try the top of my hand instead which is what she did and it was fine.

I'm appalled the radial would be the first place someone would try & place an IV. What a vulnerable area and what a sell-out thing to do just bc it's an easier access for the person inserting it.
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Avatar_m_tn
Please anyone with any knowledge please help me. I have been a dumby and IV using everything from Roxys to cocain I inject into my hand. I tried injecting in my wrist and woke up and i can nomlonger move my wrist it or down. I cant give a thumbs Up and am having a hard time moving my fingers and thumb. Its been two weeks and It has not got much if any better. Is this perminate? is there any exersize i can do to make it heal? any pills I can take to stop This? I have since quit IV drug using and im taking methadone to help quit so I geuss thats good Please help Im really scared I work on Computers and its making working near imposable PLEASE any one some advice    
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Avatar_m_tn
I recently saw a Neurologist and after seing the specialist
I have been told I am to receive an injection into my wrist.
Can anyone tell me what they think this might be for?
Any and all advice will be gratelly appreciated.

Thanks
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Avatar_f_tn
I was in the hospital last year for a blocked bile duct and then developed pancreatitis from the ERCP procedure.  During my 8 day stay, I had IV infiltration in my upper left arm.  My arm swelled significantly.  A few days after I got home, I started getting intense pain and throbbing in my upper arm.  I could not even lay down to sleep at night.  I went to urgent care, the ER for ultrasound for blood clot, primary care, orthopedist, neurologist, several months of physical therapy and I am still in constant pain.  It has been 13 months now and I am concerned that this may never get better.  Any suggestions on what else I can do.
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Avatar_f_tn
How very arrogant of you to scoff at people who said their experience was agony.

Unless you have experienced this you have no idea what someone else feels.

I have an extremely high pain threshold and recently had to go for a general anaesthetic for an operation.  The anaesthetist inserted the needle into the back of my left hand and I immediately felt an excruciating dull pain from the tips of my middle two fingers right up to my elbow.  I told him it was very painful and he said "Yes, sorry your vein rolled as I inserted the needle"  The cannula was left in place and my only comfort was knowing I was being put under and wouldn't feel it.

When I woke in the recovery room the nurse asked if I was in pain (it was a very painful operation I was having).  I replied that my cannula hurt more than my wound.  No one took me seriously.  I was returned to the ward and asked them to remove my cannula.  I was told not until I have drank some fluids.  I immediately drank the whole jug of water and asked them to remove  it.  They removed it 4 hours later and it was never mentioned anywhere on my notes that I had complained of pain.

Unfortunately my original operation had to be repeated and I had to go back to theatre 10 days later.  I told the anaesthetist not to  touch my left hand as it was still very painful and I still had pins and needles down my middle 2 fingers.  He used my right hand and 6 days later the new cannula site has healed but my first one is still very painful.  My GP said just leave it - it will just take time to heal.......

I found this site as I too wanted to know if this was going to get better or be a permanent pain.
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Avatar_f_tn
It has been 6 months since the nurse put in my IV (left forearm thumb side)  The pain at the time was excruciating and now I still have numbness in my wrist and sharp needle like pain in my forearm.  I am going to get tested on the 12th of December for nerve damage.  Nurses need to learn that if you do not hit the vein upon needle insertion DO NOT continue to dig with the needle until you 1. find the vein 2. give up on your own or 3. are made to quit from your patient or her spouse.  Don't get me wrong.  I'm a "hard stick" and some are wonderful and if they don't get it the first try will call the IV team but there are also a lot out there that feel they have something to prove.  I am anxious to get the results, won't actually have the results til Christmas eve but would like to know if it is permanent.  I would guess since it's been 6 months with no change the answer is yes.  Merry Christmas to all!!
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Avatar_n_tn
Please send me a copy of those exercises - I have sharp pain and uncomfortability with movement of my right hand and wrist.
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Avatar_n_tn
What did it take for you to get better in the 6 months?
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Avatar_m_tn
I've been reading through all the comments. Its obvious that nerve damage occurs, but it seams not to be a rare thing, its more common to me. On March 30th I took my wife into U of U ER for lower abdominal pain.  Her appendix ruptured and I found out they don't operate now they fight it with antibiotic's. Her IV's were hard to do and she has several bruises from the attempts.  this past week the remaining part of her appendix became inflamed again and back to the ER.  this time after six painfully unsuccessful attempts on both arms with an ultra-sound they got the IV in her left arm.  Oh that one came out a short time later the catheter was not long enough and the fluids got in her tissue, ( I have some photos of that) so they had to use a longer catheter so the ultra-sound again and ta-da!  she out two days later and now 4 days after shes released a dull pain in both her arms from her elbow to shoulder.  Now she says its not as sever as I've been reading about but the pain is there.  It sounds like this nerve damage to me.  one of the times the third person to try sticking her arm tried right at her wrist.... she screamed and winced in pain and cried.  We called the doctors office and they just called back and I told them whats going on... they have to see her to make an evaluation.  I told the dr about what ive read and he didn't know anything about how that would be,  but it sounds like nerve damage to me....and she still has to go into to remove the remaining part of  her appendix May 14th.  I just hope they don't need to do an IV............oh boy!
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Avatar_f_tn
I had surgery 2 weeks ago. The entire surgery and the hospital stay were the worst in all my years. I kept telling the nurses when the IV started hurting and felt like my veins were going to burst, they several times just flushed the IV with saline, it continued to be very painful after this flush, I had several episodes where a nurse would call another nurse to try and find another place to get the IV in as they were poking and poking me with no success. The 4th night in the hospital the IV backed up again the pain was unbelievable.  Two nurses took turns from about 10:40 pm until midnight trying to relocate the IV. I kept telling them that this all was very painful and reminding them if they looked in my chart I have lupus, Reynaud's Disease which I had been told from other IV attempts in previous hospital stays that it makes it very difficult to IV me and I thought that they should be finding other ways to get me the medicine I needed. I was now into Friday 5th day in hospital, I suffered all night after the midnight episode, Friday morning the new site on the left inner arm was doing the same. When Resty the RN came in that morning I said I cant do this anymore! Why can't you give me pills for the meds, I am no longer on IV fluids for hydration and I refused IV pain meds at least 36 hrs ago. The IV was removed finally. The RN brought me approx.  4-5 pills that were in place of the IV meds. I got out of there that day, they wanted me there another day or two! I cannot lift a full glass of water without pain or feeling I will drop it. My right hand up to my fingers has been swollen and my arm from wrist to almost my elbow. This is 16 days since surgery and IV was removed. Up most of the night icing my arm, took Norco as the pain at 2 am was so bad. I am going to get in and see a neurologist as I truly think they have caused me serious nerve damage and did not consider my compromised health and they were negligent in not looking for other ways at least in that 24- 36 hr period were this all started going seriously wrong. I am contacting the hospitals Advocacy Department and filing an official complaint against the hospital.
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9796629_tn?1405956402
i have the same pain i wen ttwo  days ago and had it at the same site,, they stuck me twice in the same place  at two diffeent times ,   its  brusied  and  i have been having tingling in differnt parts of body today , feeling wierd but wrist is weak now and arm feels like i had a tetnus shot in it   ***@****
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