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Old 01-17-2004, 09:41 AM   #1
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Posts: 55
river rat HB User
Unhappy numbness and tingling in left arm and fingers

hey there all you helpful and inspiring people. my question is that i am having new symptoms that i don't know if they are related to my herniated L5 and S1 discs or not. it is hard to look over my left shoulder without nerve pain in my neck and left shoulderblade. numbness travels down my left arm and into my left hand. it started on jan 6. it began off and on for a couple of days, so i thought nothing of it, like maybe i just slept wrong or something, but now it feels like that all the time. my left index finger and thumb are totally numb on the tips. but the rest of my arm tingles and my hand too. could i have different problems in my neck that have originated from my low back region? or is this something new to have evaluated. i go and see my doctors nurse for a checkup on tuesday. i had a transforaminal shot on dec 29, at my L5 and felt great for 2-3 hours, no pain. then it came back, although not as bad, but still annoying. i wonder if i have a vertabrae out causing nerve pinching. i know it is serious. don't know what to tell her, wonder what tests they will have done if any. i am stongly against any surgery. that is why i've been trying to do the right things and let the discs heal and reabsorb on their own. i miss my chiropractor, but don't want him to do anything to my neck or back to further complicate things. any advice on what to do or say to the nurse or doc would be so great. man i am tired of this ongoing ordeal. i just pray that someday i'll feel like me again. thanks for letting me go on so, rr

 
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Old 01-17-2004, 12:32 PM   #2
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Join Date: Nov 2003
Location: Missouri
Posts: 2,128
carol632 HB User
Re: numbness and tingling in left arm and fingers

The numbness and tingling in your neck and fingers should not be caused from the lumbar spine. It is more likely from your neck...could be any number of things causing it, but definitely needs to be checked out. The neck is such a delicate structure that I would most certainly not allow a chiro to touch me. I may get in trouble for saying that, it is just a personal opinion. But when you see the doctor on Tuesday be sure to have a list of questions for him that you want answered. YOu probably are going to need an MRi on your neck. I don't understand why you see a nurse on your visits rather than the doctor???
I hope you are successful in your attempt to stay out of the operating room.
I wonder if you have gotten a second opinion? Are you in pain management?
Lots of stuff available today that wasn't when I had my first surgery...it was basically surgery or nothing! In that aspect, spinies are better off than they were 30 years ago.
Good luck.
Carol
__________________
2 lami's, 3 fusions
bone spur removal
cerv. fusion, 1 level
morphine pump

 
Old 01-19-2004, 06:31 AM   #3
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Join Date: Jan 2004
Location: Wisconsin
Posts: 85
Carmaanne HB User
Re: numbness and tingling in left arm and fingers

funny you should say that about your arm and the tingling. my husband had spondy and the L5 was fused in july of this year and now he has that tingling but they are trying to tell him is carpal tunnel but yet he has been doing NOTHING!!!
Carmaanne

 
Old 01-20-2004, 04:34 PM   #4
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Join Date: Jan 2004
Location: pa
Posts: 4
tbrullo HB User
Smile Re: numbness and tingling in left arm and fingers

I would definately """NOT""""let a chiropractor touch you, this is a serious problem. You first must have an MRI and a nerve test. I had the exact symptoms except in my right arm and hand, and after five months of physical therapy the surgeon saw that I was getting worse instead of better, if you don't seek treatment and the right kind, you will lose your muscle strength. I got to the point where I couldn't even make a fist or pick up a spoon. Lasat Thurs, JAN 15TH, i HAD CERVICAL ANTERIOR DISCKTECOMY. tHEY WENT IN THRU THE FRONT OF MY THROAT, REMOVED THE TWO BAD DISCS, C4-5 & C5-6. tHEY USED A BONE FROM A BONE BANK AND FUSED IT WITH PLATES AND SCREWS. i WENT HOME THE NEXT DAY WITHOUT A NECK COLLAR. i STILL DON'T HAVE FULL STRENGTH BACK IN MY ARM AND HAND, AND STILL HAVE SOME VERY MINOR OCCASSIONAL PAIN IN THAT ARM, BUT THE SURGEON SAID TO EXPECT THAT FOR AT LEAST A COUPLE OF WEEKS. bUT EVEN STILL, ALTHOUGH IT'S ONLY BEEN 5 DAYS, MY ARM FEELS 90% BETTER ALREADY, i WISH i WOULD OF HAD IT DONE SOONER. i WISH YOU LUCK, KEEP US INFORMED, tERRY b


















[QUOTE=river rat]hey there all you helpful and inspiring people. my question is that i am having new symptoms that i don't know if they are related to my herniated L5 and S1 discs or not. it is hard to look over my left shoulder without nerve pain in my neck and left shoulderblade. numbness travels down my left arm and into my left hand. it started on jan 6. it began off and on for a couple of days, so i thought nothing of it, like maybe i just slept wrong or something, but now it feels like that all the time. my left index finger and thumb are totally numb on the tips. but the rest of my arm tingles and my hand too. could i have different problems in my neck that have originated from my low back region? or is this something new to have evaluated. i go and see my doctors nurse for a checkup on tuesday. i had a transforaminal shot on dec 29, at my L5 and felt great for 2-3 hours, no pain. then it came back, although not as bad, but still annoying. i wonder if i have a vertabrae out causing nerve pinching. i know it is serious. don't know what to tell her, wonder what tests they will have done if any. i am stongly against any surgery. that is why i've been trying to do the right things and let the discs heal and reabsorb on their own. i miss my chiropractor, but don't want him to do anything to my neck or back to further complicate things. any advice on what to do or say to the nurse or doc would be so great. man i am tired of this ongoing ordeal. i just pray that someday i'll feel like me again. thanks for letting me go on so, rr[/QUOTE]

 
Old 01-20-2004, 05:02 PM   #5
Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2003
Posts: 55
river rat HB User
Re: numbness and tingling in left arm and fingers

thanks everyone for caring and giving me some good info. went and saw the nurse who is a practioner with like 20 years experience. she and the doc confer regularly. i see him for procedures and her for checkups in between. have scheduled a mri for next monday for my neck. real thrilled about going through this whole ordeal again, first my low back and now my neck. man it is hard to stay positive and not be depressed. this time of year certainly isn't helping any. have discussed a possible discectomy for lower back, any advice on that issue? thanks for being there and knowing what i'm going through, rr

 
Old 01-20-2004, 09:14 PM   #6
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Join Date: Jan 2004
Location: Wisconsin
Posts: 85
Carmaanne HB User
Re: numbness and tingling in left arm and fingers

my husband is having the numbness and tingling in his arm/hands following a lower l5 fusion surgery. is there any corolation? they are trying to tell him he has carpal tunnel.. but how could he develop that when he hasn't even been working or doing ANYTHING!

Thanks
Carmaanne

 
Old 01-20-2004, 10:58 PM   #7
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Join Date: Jan 2004
Posts: 31
Magui HB User
Re: numbness and tingling in left arm and fingers

Hello there!
I feel your pain! I had about the same symptoms as you but in my right arm. I agree with a lot of the advice that people have already given you. Do not go see a chiropractor. They just move your bone back into place, but the forget to move the muscles with the bone. Your muscles are like your memory for bones. Since the muscles haven't been moved or manipulated the bone will just go back to where it was orginally, plus you will be in even more pain.
I recently had a cervical fusion discectomy (October 29th) where they went in the front. The surgery was really no big deal (at least not what I thought it was going to be). It took 2 and half hours, I was in the hospital one night, and was released in the morning after they saw I could climb stairs and get in and out of bed myself.
After the surgery I have noticed that my arm and fingers are not as numb as the used to be, but they still feel crammed everynow and then. The surgery defintly helped, but not 100%. My doctor said sometimes it takes up to a couple of years to feel 100% of the benfits from surgery.
Hopefully you won't need the surgery and they can help you in pain management. I have learned to get a discogram, because sometimes it isn't the disc that is pinching the nerves but the muscle. Sometimes when your muscles become irratated or inflamed they will pinch on a nerve. It is good to find out if the disc is the actual problem, and the only way I know of doing that 100% is a discogram. They are expensive and no fun, but I am glad my surgeon knew exactly what disc were causing pain and which disc needed to be removed. GOODLUCK! If you have any other questions, or just want to chat feel free to get in contact with me!
Maggie

 
Old 01-26-2004, 07:09 PM   #8
Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2003
Posts: 55
river rat HB User
Talking Re: numbness and tingling in left arm and fingers

[QUOTE=Magui]Hello there!
I feel your pain! I had about the same symptoms as you but in my right arm. I agree with a lot of the advice that people have already given you. Do not go see a chiropractor. They just move your bone back into place, but the forget to move the muscles with the bone. Your muscles are like your memory for bones. Since the muscles haven't been moved or manipulated the bone will just go back to where it was orginally, plus you will be in even more pain.
I recently had a cervical fusion discectomy (October 29th) where they went in the front. The surgery was really no big deal (at least not what I thought it was going to be). It took 2 and half hours, I was in the hospital one night, and was released in the morning after they saw I could climb stairs and get in and out of bed myself.
After the surgery I have noticed that my arm and fingers are not as numb as the used to be, but they still feel crammed everynow and then. The surgery defintly helped, but not 100%. My doctor said sometimes it takes up to a couple of years to feel 100% of the benfits from surgery.
Hopefully you won't need the surgery and they can help you in pain management. I have learned to get a discogram, because sometimes it isn't the disc that is pinching the nerves but the muscle. Sometimes when your muscles become irratated or inflamed they will pinch on a nerve. It is good to find out if the disc is the actual problem, and the only way I know of doing that 100% is a discogram. They are expensive and no fun, but I am glad my surgeon knew exactly what disc were causing pain and which disc needed to be removed. GOODLUCK! If you have any other questions, or just want to chat feel free to get in contact with me!
Maggie[/QUOTE]

thank you so much for all the good info, i'm glad i'm not alone in all this. i had the mri today and hope to go over the results tomorrow. weather permitting. i appreciate you and everyone so much for all the support and knowledge i've recieved. i'll keep on keeping on, rr

 
Old 01-27-2004, 09:30 AM   #9
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Join Date: Oct 2003
Location: MELROSE, MA, USA
Posts: 37
LMVLMV HB User
Re: numbness and tingling in left arm and fingers

I had a lumbar fusion on 12/12/03, L4, L5, S1. I'm wearing a TLSO brace. about 2 weeks after surgery, I started getting pins and needles in all my finger tips. I called the Dr. and they said it's not from the surgery which left me puzzled. I then though that it might be from my brace being to tight. I started loosening it up near the top portion of the brace while sitting or lying down. within a few days it started to go away. I have minimum pins and needles now and it only seems to happen when I forget to loosen the brace. Once I loosen it the sensation goes away. I also keep my poster in check by sitting up nice and tall. It's seems to be working.

 
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