Nerves have an important role in our survival. They transmit messages between our brains and the rest of our bodies, letting us know when something is hot or when we have been injured. When nerves in the upper extremities are compressed, pinched, or otherwise damaged, we may feel a range of symptoms, including pain, numbness, tingling, or weakness. If you have ever felt any of these sensations in your hands, wrists, arms, or fingers, you may have carpal tunnel, radial tunnel, or cubital tunnel syndrome.
It’s important to get a diagnosis and to treat nerve damage before it becomes worse or permanent. For example, if you had to live with constant pain or numbness in your hands, it would definitely affect your quality of life at work and at home. If you think you have one of these common nerve injuries, trust our caring and experienced team at the Arizona Center for Hand to Shoulder Surgery in Phoenix or Mesa. Learn more about these peripheral nerve conditions and how we can help you.
Causes of nerve damage
Peripheral nerves are 43 pairs of motor and sensory nerves that relay messages between the brain and spinal cord and the rest of the body. Nerves can be easily damaged by an accident or injury, repetitive use, or even from resting your arm in the same position on a hard surface for too long. For example, you’re probably familiar with the feeling of “pins and needles” or like your foot fell asleep when sitting in a certain position for too long. You may experience a similar feeling in your hands, arms, or wrists if you have damage to one of the peripheral nerves in those areas.
Carpal tunnel syndrome
This is the most common form of nerve damage that affects the upper extremities, and the one with which most people are familiar. When the median nerve is compressed, or pinched, you may have pain, numbness, or tingling in your hand, wrist, or forearm. It can be treated with a brace, physical therapy, and pain-relieving medication. But, if symptoms persist or worsen, you may need surgery.
The radial nerve is located near your elbow, or the “funny bone.” You may experience the same symptoms mentioned above near your elbow. It can also be treated with a brace, physical therapy, or medication, but may also be treated with surgery if your condition is severe.
Cubital tunnel syndrome
The ulnar nerve runs from your neck down into your hand. When this nerve is damaged, you may have numbness or tingling in your hands or fingers. It can also be treated with a brace, physical therapy, or medication. Sometimes, surgery is the best fix.
It’s best to get a proper diagnosis and to begin treatment as soon as you start experiencing symptoms. This is to prevent the conditions from getting worse and causing lasting nerve damage. So, don’t suffer with pain, numbness, or tingling in your arms or hands any longer. Contact the experts at the Arizona Center for Hand to Shoulder Surgery in Phoenix or Mesa today, so you can start your road to recovery. Use our convenient online booking tool, or call us at 602-258-4788.