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What causes persistent tingling sensation in face and right arm while treating arthritis?

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Posted on Mon, 25 Jul 2016
Question: I have facial tingling which came on 5 weeks ago, as well as tingling in my right arm. The tingling moves around and is more prominent on my right side but is on my left too. I have osteo arthritis in my spine and costochondritis. The Dr also diagnosed carpel tunnel about 2 years ago. I am 45, female, recently had a hysterectomy due to numerous fibroids and extremely heavy periods. I have always suffered from headaches and have a history of sciatic pain. Doctor prescribed anti inflamm 5 weeks ago but I don't think they've made much (if any) difference. I am about 15-20kgs overweight, don't drink, smoke or take drugs. Standard blood tests came back clear. I have no trouble sleeping and feel OK in myself, don't feel overly anxious etc. Not sure who I should see next?
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Answered by Dr. Ishu Bishnoi (49 minutes later)
Brief Answer:
Cause of tingling

Detailed Answer:
Hi XXXX, thanks for asking from HCM.


I can understand your concern. The tingling sensation over face (right>left) along with right arm could be due to

: Syringomyelia and syringobulbia - It means dilatation of central canal of spinal cord and brainstem which leads to gradual destruction of sensory and motor nerves/nuclei. It is usually secondary to some compression illness like tumor/disc/narrow space.

It can be ruled out by getting MRI brain and cervical spinal cord. You should consult neurosurgeon for it.

: Deficiency of B12, folic acid, calcium or multi deficiency disease - Deficiency of important vitamin and minerals can lead to nerve damage and tingling sensations. It usually causes generalised tingling in all extremities, oral ulcer, dry tongue, regular infections.

It is less likely in your case, but can be suspected if other causes are negative. Consult neurologist for it. He will advise you blood test for checking level and NCV (nerve conduction velocity) to confirm nerve damage.

: Diabetes Mellitus - It means raised blood sugar level. It can cause neuropathy and such sensations.

It can be ruled out by normal fasting and post feed blood sugar.

: Foramen Magnum lesion like tumor/vascular mass/aneurysm/bony mass - Foramen Magnum is a site which separates cord and brainstem. It is a passage like structure. Lesion at this level can cause facial tingling and arm tingling.

It can be diagnosed by MRI brain and spinal cord. Consult neurosurgeon or -physician for it.

You can consult neurologist first with keeping above diagnosis in your mind. He will advise you some basic tests as mentioned above to find out the cause. Further treatment will depend upon diagnosis.

Hope it will help you. If still in doubt, do let me know.

Thanks. Take care.

Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Vaishalee Punj
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Answered by
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Dr. Ishu Bishnoi

Neurologist, Surgical

Practicing since :2007

Answered : 901 Questions

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What causes persistent tingling sensation in face and right arm while treating arthritis?

Brief Answer: Cause of tingling Detailed Answer: Hi XXXX, thanks for asking from HCM. I can understand your concern. The tingling sensation over face (right>left) along with right arm could be due to : Syringomyelia and syringobulbia - It means dilatation of central canal of spinal cord and brainstem which leads to gradual destruction of sensory and motor nerves/nuclei. It is usually secondary to some compression illness like tumor/disc/narrow space. It can be ruled out by getting MRI brain and cervical spinal cord. You should consult neurosurgeon for it. : Deficiency of B12, folic acid, calcium or multi deficiency disease - Deficiency of important vitamin and minerals can lead to nerve damage and tingling sensations. It usually causes generalised tingling in all extremities, oral ulcer, dry tongue, regular infections. It is less likely in your case, but can be suspected if other causes are negative. Consult neurologist for it. He will advise you blood test for checking level and NCV (nerve conduction velocity) to confirm nerve damage. : Diabetes Mellitus - It means raised blood sugar level. It can cause neuropathy and such sensations. It can be ruled out by normal fasting and post feed blood sugar. : Foramen Magnum lesion like tumor/vascular mass/aneurysm/bony mass - Foramen Magnum is a site which separates cord and brainstem. It is a passage like structure. Lesion at this level can cause facial tingling and arm tingling. It can be diagnosed by MRI brain and spinal cord. Consult neurosurgeon or -physician for it. You can consult neurologist first with keeping above diagnosis in your mind. He will advise you some basic tests as mentioned above to find out the cause. Further treatment will depend upon diagnosis. Hope it will help you. If still in doubt, do let me know. Thanks. Take care.