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stiffness numbness and tingling in right hand upon wakening
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stiffness numbness and tingling in right hand upon wakening

For the last few months I have had stiffness in my right hand upon wakening followed by numbness and tingling.  
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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 a doctor.

Without the ability to examine and obtain a history, I can not tell you what the exact cause of the symptoms is. However I will try to provide you with some useful information based on the limited information provided. I will discuss the most common cause of numbness and tingling of the hand, but please note there are other causes (for example ulnar or radial nerve entrapment).

If the numbness and tingling is in the first three to four fingers (i.e., thumb to ~ring finger), it may be a condition called carpal tunnel syndrome. Carpal tunnel syndrome is a compression/entrapment syndrome of the median nerve at the wrist. It usually results from excessive use of hands and occupational “microtrauma”.  Other causes include hypothyroidism, amyloidosis, and arthritis to name a few. It may also arise during pregnancy and resolve after delivery of the child. Classically, the sensory changes usually are worse at night, and patients complain of having to shake their hand to wake it up. If left untreated, over time, you may develop atrophy of muscles of the thumb supplied by the median nerve.

If these symptoms fit you, I would recommend that you follow up with your local primary care physician and perhaps neurologist. The neurologist will perform a specific neurological examination focused on the median nerve. The neurologist may also elect to perform an EMG/NCS to evaluate the motor and sensory components of the median nerve as it crosses the wrist. Treatment options include surgical release of the carpal ligament at the wrist. However, less invasive procedure such as splinting of the wrist, which can be purchased at local drug stores, should be tried first. Medications are usually directed at the underlying cause and include NSAIDs such as ibuprofen.


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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