tingling in right thumb and index finger

by Mark Patel
(Corona, CA, USA)

tingling in right thumb and index finger

While lifting weights during my regular exercise, I felt pain in my right shoulder and Bicep, but no tingling. My Orthopedic Doctor ordered an MRI that I had done the same day.

The very next day, before I could see the Orthopedic Doctor for MRI results, I had Shingles in my right arm. The shingles took 4 weeks to clear and the pain in shoulder/bicep continued.

Also, in the third week of Shingles, I started having tingling in my right hand thumb and index finger. When I saw the Orthopedic Doctor again. He said the MRI report showed Impingement Syndrome (IS) and possibly Carpal Tunnel Syndrome (RTS). He sent me to a Neurologist and prescribed Physical Therapy for IS and CTS.

The Neurologist did not find either IS or RTS. I am going through Physical Therapy for strengthening the shoulder rotator cuff and eliminating tingling. As part of therapy to reduce tingling, I am going through a 20 minutes Neck Traction that involves a 60 seconds pull and 30 seconds relaxation cycle.

Although my tingling is almost gone, I am concerned about adverse effects of the Neck Traction.

I have 3 more sessions of physical therapy left. Could you please advise me whether I should continue with the Neck Traction.

[Hello Mark,
Most usually, when you have two conditions in the same arm, like IS and CTS, then the likelihood of a fixated first rib, or cervical facet syndrome is high. Unless these underlying causes are corrected, the arm stuff will continue. Do you have any associated neck pain?

There is no research confirming that neck traction, intermittent or continous, helps. That doesn't mean that it doesn't help, but the research is not there. My own experience is that continous traction PLUS release of those subluxations in the lower neck is beneficial, but on its own has minimal if any benefit. I know of no adverse affects of neck traction, done at the correct force. Something is obviously helping, so I'd stay with the programme.

You can make a home traction unit, if you are handy. https://www.chiropractic-help.com/Home-traction-unit.html

Does placing your hand on your head relieve or aggravate the tingling in your hand? https://www.chiropractic-help.com/Shoulder-Abduction-Relief.html

It is indeed confusing that the two specialists are not in agreement.

The shingles probably is an incidental event, but confirms that you or your neurological system are under stress.

The fact that the tingling is very specificaly in the C6 dermatome (thumb and forefinger) definitely points to your neck.

I hope this has contributed.

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