i got injured 3 months ago lifting heavy objects. i have alot of pain right above the elbow and its swollen. i've had an MRI and results were normal. i've had 2 corticosteroids shots last month and pain is still present. now my ring finger and pinky are most of the time numb. what can it be? a nerve?
Hi, it is probably ulnar nerve entrapment at elbow leading to tingling in little and ring finger. “Compression at the elbow, known as cubital tunnel syndrome, causes numbness in the small finger, half of the ring finger, and the back half of the hand over the small finger”.
Please consult doctor for nerve conduction studies, for more information visit http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ulnar_nerve_entrapment
Continuing to do what caused the injury initially may certainly retard healing. Can you go on a modified duty in the interim?
Consider getting a set of well fit elbow gaurds. One for work and use the other to sleep in. They will prevent you from overflexing your arm (causing the ulnar nerve to get stretched), protect the ulnar nerve from blunt trauma and encourage you to keep the arm straighter when sleeping.
thank you. the thing is theres no modified duty at work. its all physical work. i believe i injured it constantly lifting heavy items during the shift. iam havin a NCV and EMG exam in the weeks to come. MRI and X-ray were normal. good chance i might have the ulnar nerve injured.
Kevin, I have had a similar scenario, but I can tell you that neither an MRI NOR a nerve conduction study will tell you much, if anything. The problem is akin to a "kinked hose" - you are feeling pain, referred, at a lower point generally than where the "kink" is located. These problems usually begin at the level of the brachial plexus - where the shoulder meets the neck. If you must continue lifting, watch your POSTURE so that you do not have collapsed shoulders forward - try to get them neutral. The therapist that I saw is named Peter Edgelow, who developed the Edgelow Protocol (primarily for computer users who experience similar symptoms). He has a program that you can do at home, and the best tool is an air pillow that actually allows you to do diaphragmatic breathing with hip motion. This will open up your whole upper quarter and provide relief to the your arms. Also, the braces don't work! Just try to sleep on your back, if possible, with your hands straight and downward, or on your side, with your arms ALWAYS STRAIGHT and in front of you. I sleep with three pillows. I hope this advice helps. If you want to study some similar symptoms, check out Thoracic Outlet Syndrome.
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