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Dr. Andrew Rynne
MD
Dr. Andrew Rynne

Family Physician

Exp 50 years

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What causes pain and numbness in the arms?

My sister, Christy, 41, had a blood draw done on Thursday of this past week. She is diabetic and gets this done monthly. Never before has there been pain associated with this process. This particular time was incredibly painful. The tech was rude and told her the pain was due to the blood draw and to stop complaining. Four vials were taken and 3 days later her arm is still hurting. She says that the pain comes and goes. it starts in the inner elbow, where the blood was drawn, and shoots to her fingertips. Her lower arm is still numb, too. She wonders if the tech hit a nerve or something along those lines. She called me today asking if she should go and get it looked at immediately or can it wait as the pain will eventually subside. Thank you for taking the time to look into this for us. ~Amy
Fri, 30 Mar 2018
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General & Family Physician 's  Response
Hello,

Pain after blood withdrawal is usually due to thrombophlebitis (clotting of blood in the vein). Blackening of the vein may be seen, it may resolve after some days.

Is the power in the arm normal? Is there any inability to do work with the hand? Any clawing of hand?

If yes, then there might be an accidental nerve injury and needs medical attention.

If it is not, then you can wait for the clot to get resolved. You can use topical heparin (ointment or gel) over the area. Also look for any infection of the clot.

Hope I have answered your query. Let me know if I can assist you further.

Regards,
Dr. Shakeel Khan
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