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Numbness in fingers and toes. Could it be a pinched nerve?

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I have been experiencing numbness in my fingers every morning usually the right hand for over a month. More recently I've been painting for several hours every other day for about a week and am finding the finger numbness has increased. Could this just be a pinched nerve? Or something more serious? Off and on (about once every 4 days) - I experience some numbness in my right foot especially the toes and a little up from there. I also notice my right fingertips get really cold for about half an hour or so and then get warm again altho' numb. Please advise.
Posted Mon, 11 Jun 2012 in General Health
Answered by Dr. Anil Grover 28 minutes later

Thanks for your writing in.

At this stage, you have pin pointed the root cause of your malady. It has to with the nerve which carry sensations from your finger tips to spinal cord (the part of nervous system which supplies and receives nerve impulses form neck downward). The causes can be:
1. Sensory neuropathy: I am sure, in your recent medical check up, your doctor would have excluded Diabetes. If not, that is mandatory. The second most important cause is vitamin deficiency. You can request your doctor to prescribe a multivitamin supplement. In your age, recommended daily requirement is usually not met with food therefore need for supplement.
2. Cervical Spondylosis: In view of your last year history of back spasms (which could be due to irritation of motor nerves to these muscles), request your doctor to do a physical examination and x-rays of your cervical spine. If positive, then apart from hard bed, use of thin pillow, correct posture, neck exercises and possibly a cervical collar is all what you need.Your symptom of pain around the outer extremities could be due to thoracic spine involvement.
3. If these causes are excluded then let your primary doctor refer you to a neurologist. If that is the case, a detailed examination with some other sophisticated tests would be needed but it is unlikely that this situation would arise.

With Best Wishes

Dr Anil Grover
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