The ulnar nerve, extending from the neck to your hand, plays a crucial role in muscle control in your forearm, hand, and fingers. Cubital Tunnel Syndrome occurs when this nerve experiences irritation or compression. If not addressed promptly, it may weaken muscles and cause atrophy. Below, the best orthopedic surgeon in Mukundapur has discussed the symptoms, diagnosis and treatments of this condition.
Possible causes of Cubital Tunnel Syndrome include:
- Pressure: Casually resting your elbow on an armrest for extended periods can unexpectedly compress the ulnar nerve and cause numbness in your arm.
- Snapping: The ulnar nerve may experience displacement during body movements, snapping over the medial epicondyle. Repetitive snapping of the nerve in this manner can lead to the development of Cubital Tunnel Syndrome.
- Stretching: Keeping your elbows stretched for long hours when doing any work or while sleeping might overstretch the nerve, resulting in this condition.
Common indicators of Cubital Tunnel Syndrome may vary among individuals but usually include:
- Numbness and tingling sensations in the hand, particularly in the ring and little finger.
- Severe pain.
- Weakened grip caused due to weak muscles in the affected area of the arm.
- Aching discomfort on the inner side of the elbow.
To initiate the diagnosis process, doctors conduct the following tests:
- Electromyogram (EMG): This examination evaluates nerve and muscle function, specifically testing the forearm muscles controlled by the ulnar nerve. Irregular muscle function indicates an issue with the nerve.
- X-rays: Employed to identify bone spurs, arthritis, or areas where bone compression may affect the ulnar nerve.
- Nerve conduction test: This test measures the speed at which signals travel down a nerve, helping doctors understand any compression or constriction of the nerve.
Cubital Tunnel Syndrome can be addressed through both surgical and non-surgical treatments. Top orthopedic doctors in Mukundapur recommend the following non-surgical procedures:
- Nonsteroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drugs (NSAIDs): Certain medications, such as NSAIDs, can aid in reducing swelling around the nerve, thereby alleviating pain associated with Cubital Tunnel Syndrome. Make sure to take the recommendation of an orthopedic doctor before taking any of these medicines.
- Bracing or Splinting: Utilizing a padded brace or splint during sleep can assist in maintaining your elbow in a straight position.
- Exercise: Incorporating nerve gliding exercises may facilitate smoother movement of the ulnar nerve through the cubital tunnel. Performing these exercises regularly will provide some relief to your arm and wrist. For example, try holding your arm in front of you with a straight elbow, then curling your wrist and fingers toward your body. Subsequently, push them away from you and bend your elbow.
- Physical Therapy: Consulting a physical therapist can provide valuable insights into techniques to avoid exerting pressure on your ulnar nerve.
Cubital Tunnel Syndrome can cause severe pain and discomfort. Hence, it’s important to address the root causes to restore optimal nerve function. Contact a renowned orthopedic surgeon in Mukundapur for expert guidance.