Pinched Nerve?

Discussion in 'Community Discussion' started by ErikCLDR, Apr 30, 2008.

  1. ErikCLDR macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Jan 14, 2007
    #1
    Yes, another medical thread.

    Well last night while doing my homework around 10:00 I noticed my left forearm felt funny but shrugged it off because I was working hard. I dropped my pen and reached down to grab it with my left hand and an intense yet non painful pins and needles feeling exploded from my lower forearm/wrist area. Then I noticed that for a while that my arm had been very numb feeling. Basically between my elbow and wrist area I have very reduced sensation- comparable to how numb your skin is after using ice to stop swelling, if not a little worse. My arm is not swollen and seems symmetrical with my other arm.

    So basically all day my forearm has been numb with the exception of the underside of my arm in line with my pinky finger. My sensation in my hand is probably about 90% and movement wise about 85% (can't move fingers as fast or with quite as much control as normal it seems). I've also had random areas of pain on my arm similar to getting hit with a lacrosse stick or some other blunt object.

    Does this sound like a pinched nerve? I am guessing its the Ulnar nerve after quickly looking in my anatomy book haha. I supposed it would be pinched in my elbow, shoulder, or back. Bad backs run in my family and I have back pain believed to be caused by neuromuscular dysfunction (using wrong muscles for certain tasks, actually a fairly normal phenomenon). If this is a pinched nerve how long does this last and is it vital to seek medical attention?

    BTW I am 17 and active.
     
  2. EricNau Moderator emeritus

    EricNau

    Joined:
    Apr 27, 2005
    Location:
    San Francisco, CA
    #2
    As always, if you have a medical question you should consult your doctor, not a computer forum on the internet. (Some healthcare providers even have advice nurses on call who could evaluate your situation to determine if medical treatment is necessary).

    While you're on hold, you can read this article on WebMD: Compressed Nerve (Pinched Nerve) :)
     
  3. letsgorangers macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jul 10, 2006
    Location:
    TN
    #3
    I'm not sure about where you live, but I couldn't get medical service at 8 pm unless it was an emergency. I'm sure he's just wondering if someone's had similar experiences so he can better assess his situation. Yes, a doctor is better than an internet forum, but since he can't get into a doctor until tomorrow, I don't see how this hurts.

    Anyway I've never had a pinched nerve, so I don't have any advice to offer. But I hope you feel better!
     
  4. emmawu macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jan 19, 2005
    Location:
    Wauwatosa, WI
    #4
    See your doc who perhaps will refer you to a physical therapist. If you have a case of repetitive stress syndrome or tendonitis PT will really help. You really HAVE to get a medical diagnosis first. Good health and good luck.
     
  5. EricNau Moderator emeritus

    EricNau

    Joined:
    Apr 27, 2005
    Location:
    San Francisco, CA
    #5
    The advice nurses I mentioned earlier are available 24/7, in fact, they're meant specifically to be contacted outside of normal office hours (otherwise, you'd just call the doctor).

    Unfortunately, I doubt all practices have this same system.
     
  6. letsgorangers macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jul 10, 2006
    Location:
    TN
    #6
    The insurance I currently carry (as of like 3 days ago) has this 24/7 nurse line which I think is really cool. But my previous one definitely didn't have anything like that. I think that sort of thing should be available to everyone. Would probably cut down on unnecessary doctor visits and such.
     
  7. ErikCLDR thread starter macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Jan 14, 2007
    #7
    Well my arm is feeling better today, only a few numb periods throughout the day. Too much typing? :D
     
  8. Dagless macrumors Core

    Dagless

    Joined:
    Jan 18, 2005
    Location:
    Fighting to stay in the EU
    #8
    First of all, hello!

    I had this exact same problem 4 weeks ago. I've always had a bad posture at a computer and one day I did some heavy lifting and must have done something to my nerve. Either way my little finger had pins and needles often and the forearm felt weak. Only very subtle though, I could go about my daily activities but was told to keep off it. Basically my ulnar nerve had become inflamed and presented the same problems you have now.

    It took 4 weeks to get better.

    My GP told me to keep my arm straight as often as possible. Wrap a towel or splint around the arm to prevent it from bending at night, the worst thing you can do is sleep with your hand under the pillow. And to just take ibuprofen until it got better.

    It took a while, I still feel a little funny with it now but it's nothing like it was. So take it easy for 4 weeks! I was told it could take between 1-5 weeks to get better, if it didn't then surgery would be required.


    22 here.

    Just to stress it again - KEEP OFF IT. It can go worse, if it's an ulnar nerve problem (like mine) it can develop into Cubital Tunnel Syndrome which is a nasty state to be in. Type 1 handed with your bad arm fully straightened (ideally so it's pointing down and not across a desk). But do see a doctor about it. This is just advice from someone who had your problem :)
     
  9. c073186 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Nov 2, 2007
    #9
    I once had what I thought was a pinched nerve. I went to the doctor with a lot of back pain. He told me, "probably just a pinched nerve, it'll go away in time, but we'll get an MRI to confirm it." Found out that I had two tumors in my lumbar spine. The effect was the same: the nerves were being cramped and was giving me a lot of pain. So I know what you are experiencing and if it is not something more serious it will go away on its own - but it may take time (couple weeks ... couple months ... who knows). It is a very frustrating type of pain because there is almost no pain medication that successfully treats nerve-related pain. Good luck with that (although it sounds like it's already getting better).
     
  10. ErikCLDR thread starter macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Jan 14, 2007
    #10
    thanks for the insightful responses!

    My arm has sensation in it today but it randomly hurts every so often.
     
  11. Dagless macrumors Core

    Dagless

    Joined:
    Jan 18, 2005
    Location:
    Fighting to stay in the EU
    #11
    Keep off it then. I thought mine was okay but last night I was leaning on it whilst playing my PSP and my little finger has been a big "tight" all morning. Still works but it's not 100% of what it was.

    Ibuprofen and rest.
     

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