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Dr. Andrew Rynne
Dr. Andrew Rynne

Family Physician

Exp 50 years

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What causes numbness in fingers while bending elbows?

Answered by
Dr. T Chandrakant

General Surgeon

Practicing since :1984

Answered : 17733 Questions

Posted on Wed, 8 Jun 2016 in Veins and Arteries
Question: I have what I believe to be an inflamed artery or nerve in both elbows. When bending my elbow for as little as 30 seconds my fingers begin to get numb. At night while sleeping on either side the numbness and pain will wake me. If I am laying flat with arms straight the blood seems to flow back into my hands and the numbness subsides. This problem has increases in frequency and intensity over the past few weeks. I can feel the problem area and it feels like a hardened wire with sharp pain when touched.
Answered by Dr. T Chandrakant 57 minutes later
Brief Answer:
Ulnar nerve affection, needs clinical evaluation and investigations

Detailed Answer:
Thanks for your query.
To recapitulate: Male/55 - fingers get numb on bending the elbows - happens even at night - problem subsides on straightening the elbows - consulted sports Chiropractor using his tools and said about ulnar nerve - treatment did not help you - problems increased over few weeks - you can feel the problem area lke a hardened wire with sharp pain when touched ...

This is most probable the affection of Ulnar nerve due to its classical position at the elbow as it runs behind the medial epicondyle in the bony groove.

I would advise you the following:
To consult your Family Physician to have clinical evaluation and get a proper reference to the Orthopedic Surgeon or a Neurosurgeon as the practice prevails in your area that your Family Physician would know.
Proper clinical evaluation of the problem and further investigations to get to the root cause is very important as then only an effective treatment can be planned.

You may be getting the sensation mostly in the little and ring finger area.
Are there any problems at the neck or the wrist area?
Any medical problems like diabetes or any other problems?
Any other information that you would like to share..

I hope this answer helps you. Please feel free to ask for further relevant queries if you feel that there is a gap of communicataion
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar
Follow up: Dr. T Chandrakant 4 hours later
Thanks Dr. T. I do not have diabetes but there is some in my family. I do have sharp pain inn my wrists that feels like electricity. It sounds like what other people have described as carpel tunnel but it appears to be a part of this Ulnar nerve problem.
I also seem to get fatigued easily and have lost much strength at the gym. What is the test for Lyme's disease? We live in a rural area with deer and I have found ticks on me before but never had any rings around the site or any other symptoms.
Answered by Dr. T Chandrakant 32 minutes later
Brief Answer:
Blood tests for Lyme's

Detailed Answer:
Thanks for your feedback.
Get the appropriate clinical evaluation done as explained above. Pain at the wrist may not be due to Carpal Tunnel Syndrome- it is more of tingling in the thumb and nearby fingers.
Also noted that you are getting fatigued easily and lost much strength at Gym.
The tests of Lymes' disease is usually done by the blood antibody test.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar

The User accepted the expert's answer

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