Avatar universal


I am a Type II diabetic taking 500 mg of Metformin.  Additionally,  I take Advair, Lipitor, Synthroid.  My triglicerides are high.  My question is that my hands have been numb for at least 3 wks.  I can barely squeeze them shut, but I  can still pick up items, dress myself, and lead a "normal" life.    I think I have neuropathy.  What can I do about it, and what is my prognosis..will it get wose?  What can I take or do to remedy this numbness?
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Avatar universal
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 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.

You are correct in stating that numbness in the hands can be due to neuropathy. However, the generalized neuropathy (involving most nerves in the body) related to diabetes and several other metabolic and nutritional disorders most often starts in the feet, not the hands. In a diabetic with thyroid disease, numbness in the hands would raise concern for another type of neuropathy: carpal tunnel syndrome.

The median nerve can be injured anywhere along its course. If your symptoms are confined to just your hand, it may be the nerve was injured somewhere at the wrist. The carpal tunnel is the area in the wrist that the median nerve passes through. If the median nerve is compressed in the carpal tunnel, it can cause symptoms in the first three digits of the hand most often, but in some patients shooting pains can occur all the way up to the elbow. The symptoms are often worst at night. Carpal tunnel syndrome can be caused by repetitive movements at the wrist like typing. Treatment includes wearing a wrist brace and only in severe cases surgery.

Rarely, cervical spine problems can lead to numbness/tingling in both hands, as can some other rare disorders like thoracic outlet syndrome.

Discussion of your symptoms with your primary doctor/family physician is recommended, with possible referral to a neurologist. Potential testing may or may not include, depending on your full history and physical examination, an MRI of the neck, or an EMG/NCS, a test which tests how electricity is conducted along nerves and how muscles respond.

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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Avatar universal
Hi needy.  I'm no physician although I've seen enough of them, I feel I could be one, lol...  I am not diabetic, but I do have peripheral neuropathy and I know they are very closely related.  My pain started in my right hand when I was hospitalized for pneumonia, the middle, ring, and pinky fingers are the ones that went completely numb, and I had no feeling in them, I could feel they were there, and I could move them but it was a chore.  Then after about 8 mos my left hand same fingers would waking me up at night going numb, tingling, like they were asleep, or in that painful stage of waking up from sleep or like they were really fat or I had on boxing gloves...it progressed eventually to all the time, but I still have my worst episodes at night,  (try to keep them as warm as possible).  My right hand improved with PT, but with it's improvement came the pain (I almost would rather it to have stayed numb). Ha ha.  But now my feet have begun to feel like my hands.

But saying all this, I know from my late father's situation (diabetic, heart disease) that you could very well have diabetic neuropathy, and to please be careful because you are more likely to injure your hands or feet if they are numb, and that could be really bad.  Also, maybe ask your dr. about your medication, I know my blood pressure medication makes my neuropathy worse, and in my dad's case, the medications they were giving him would draw blood away from the extremities and that could be contributing as well.  Just try to keep your hands warm (I wear socks on my hands at night and warm baths help) :) And keep them from injury, we need no ulcers!  Also, you mentioned you take advair, do you have CoPD?  You sound like my mom, are you? he he. Well if you are you must stop smoking! Ha ha, just kidding, but if you do and you are a smoker, no judgement here, but that too can make your problem worse.

But it could be as simple as a vitamin deficiency, I take Metanax a folic acid supplement, neurontin, and duragesic.  On top of that I have thermoablation therapy and nerve blocks that help my situation.

So good luck to you and I hope some of this may have helped.  But my final advice is I think it would behoove you to see a your dr very soon.
Helpful - 1

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