Shoulder elbow neck

by Marie
(Newfoundland)


I had an injury in early 2017. It was discovered that there was mild cervical radiculopathy in the C7-C8 region. I have also had EMG studies completed that are normal.

My problem is pins and needles in arm are unrelenting. My physiotherapist noticed tension in the ulnar nerve and said that could be causing me some of my trouble. Sometimes my elbow pains as if I hit the funny bone but it stays for a very long period of time.

Is it possible that my neck issue could cause all this pins and needles and numbness? Is it possible to have this tension that would not show up on EMG studies?

I guess clinically the doctors think my issues should be resolving but I still have a lot of pain, burning, pins & needles and numbness, I feel they don’t believe me anymore and don’t know what to do to make it better. Any advice would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!

Hello Marie,
I take it an MVA. No injury to your arm itself?

I have some very specific questions for you. The more accurately you answer them - it will take time - the better the chances are that Dr Google may be able to contribute.

1. If you turn your head to the side of the arm pain, and then simultaneously look up, exactly what happens?

2. Exactly which of the dermatome patterns is affected. If the tingling crosses several of the dermatomes, then it's likely to be a nerve, not a nerve root affected. ie not in your neck.

3. Does the tingling in your arm increase or decrease if you raise you hand above your head?

4. Prick your arm with a pin, comparing left and right. Is there a difference, more or less, and does it follow a dermatomal pattern as in the graphic above? Google dermatomes for upper arm.

5. Ask hubby to do the 'upper limb tension test' which you can find at Chiropractic Help using the search function.

Please copy and paste a copy of your x-ray report.

Attention to detail is vital. Otherwise don't waste your and my time.

Dr B

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