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Old 10-08-2008, 10:57 PM   #1
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i would like to communicate with anyone else who has damaged their ulnar nerve.

on june 22 of this year, i fell onto a glass topped coffee table and severed the ulnar nerve in my left arm. the ulnar nerve is commonly known as the "funny" bone, but it is so far from funny to seriously damage it. it has been extremely painful, and i am loosing function in my left hand. i hear a different story from every professioonal that i have spoken to, in regards to the expected prognosis. i would so appreciate to hear from another person who has actually gone through this ordeal, particularly if it has been some time since the accident. i would like to know if and when the severe pain abates..... i would like to know what you are doing to deal with this pain, and how you are rehabilitating your hand etc. the professionals only have textbook information. i want to correspond with someone who understands what i am talking about.

 
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Old 01-08-2009, 05:56 AM   #2
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Re: i would like to communicate with anyone else who has damaged their ulnar nerve.

hello

i have severe ulnar neuropathy and diagnosed with cubital tunnel syndrome. i had a cubital tunnel release done last may and then in june my muscles in my hand started atrophying and my hand was getting weaker and weaker and the numbness in my pinky and ring finger was still there.

my orthopedic surgeon sent me to a neurosurgeon. neurosurgeon wasn't sure what was going on so he then sent me to uc davis neurosurgery. i FINALLY saw the neurosurgeon at uc davis yesterday. he said it was the worst case he had seen in a very very long time and wanted me to go in for surgery asap. so i have surgery on monday. he said the muscle i have lost will not come back and neither will my fine motor skills. That part really stinks!!! He did say that it will hopefully stop the progression.

the surgery itself is to remove the scar tissue from with in the nerve (neurolysis). He also said that if i don't have this surgery then the cramping in my fingers will only get worse and that they would eventually stay in the cramped position and that this surgery will hopefully prevent that from happening.

anyway i am not sure if the pain will subside or not but if the weakness and stuff gets any worse then i would get in and see a neurosurgeon. i wouldn't want your hand to get as bad as mine is. i'll let you know how my surgery goes.

Last edited by christina_142; 01-08-2009 at 05:59 AM.

 
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Old 01-09-2009, 05:02 PM   #3
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Re: i would like to communicate with anyone else who has damaged their ulnar nerve.

i have had surgery on my ulnar and radial nerves and theres another one believe me it is no picnic i also had tennis elboe and capal tunnel but this has been going on for 8 years now and i am currently disabled due to this and go to a pain managment center to control the pain so i wish you all the luck but my hands are drawn from it and you dont get nothing back you lose i had my surgery done in morgantown wv and i wish i never would have had them done now but everyone heals different but listen to your doctors orders i had a bad employer who wouldnt obey the doctors orders and that was a big problem

Last edited by moderator2; 01-13-2009 at 10:41 AM. Reason: please use language appropriate to this community

 
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Old 01-10-2009, 06:44 AM   #4
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Re: i would like to communicate with anyone else who has damaged their ulnar nerve.

so your surgery didn't stop the progression?

 
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Old 01-13-2009, 10:25 AM   #5
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Re: i would like to communicate with anyone else who has damaged their ulnar nerve.

it did at first but all the nerves became rentraped all over again i hope this doesnt happen to you like i said im on disability now and no surgeons will even touch my arms because the amount of work thats done been done on them

 
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Old 01-15-2009, 02:24 AM   #6
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Re: i would like to communicate with anyone else who has damaged their ulnar nerve.

This might sound a little wierd but when I was taking St Johns Wort my ulnar nerve problems were gone.

 
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Old 01-18-2009, 10:15 AM   #7
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Re: i would like to communicate with anyone else who has damaged their ulnar nerve.

hi, it has been a long time since i started this thread, and now i am starting to get feedback. at this point it has been 7 months since my accident and surgery. i stopped taking the morphine in the third month. the pain is getting much less. i used to get these "10" pains as much as every minute. fortunately they only lasted for a few seconds or i wouldnt have been able to live through them. now i am getting these pains maybe 10 - 20 times a day instead of every minute. the function of the hand is not improving much, but i am able to do almost everything that i ever did......knitting and crocheting are out of the question....

i think the most important thing is to work the hand as much as possible. i know that when i heard that i was horrified! it was such agony to even touch the arm or hand. i was unable to splint the fingers like the physio told me to do. he might as well have told me to stick my hand in a meat grinder. just couldnt deal with the pain even though the parts are supposedly without feeling, they sure feel that!!!

this may sound impossible to people who are suffering such agony as you are, but i have found that it is absolutely imperitive to have faith, and to "get over it". yes, to thinkm of other things. to see what we CAN do and then to do it. especially to do things for others. when people ask me about my hand now, i just say....i have a life, and its a good one, and i am thankful.

that said, i must add that this injury has been the most horrendous, painful thiing i have endured in my life, and that includes two back surgeries, and a transverse breach unmedicated delivery of my first child. i wish you strength and courage to deal with this.

 
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Old 01-31-2010, 08:08 PM   #8
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Re: i would like to communicate with anyone else who has damaged their ulnar nerve.

Hi Arlene,
My husband severed 90% of this ulnar nerve about 12 years ago. It was surgically reattached. His little finger is atrophied, but he has strength and some agility in the hand.
The difficulty has been pain management. The pain at this point seems to be getting worse. He is on pain medication, which he has recently increased. If you would like to discuss anything with him. Let me know.
Holly

 
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Old 02-01-2010, 10:36 AM   #9
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Re: i would like to communicate with anyone else who has damaged their ulnar nerve.

hi holly, and thanks for your reply. its been so long that i had forgotten about this site, but not about my injury. unfortunately, it bothers me every day, and i grieve the loss of the function of this left hand enormously. i am totally thanful that i am right handed, so the loss is less extreme. i am now typing with both hands, the ring finger can press down, but it feels wierd still. i have finally obtained a brace for the hand which keeps the fingers extended while i sleep. i have been told to continue to work at keeping the fingers in motion even though the chances are almost nonexistant that they will ever function normally again. the baby finger is totally useless, but the ring finger can do some small stuff, but it curls under and is almost impossible to straigten out even with huge force.

i would like very much to hear from your husband, or yourself about how he is coping. i do not have much pain, although it is always an irritationg burning buzzing feeling going on in my hand. i feel so much grief over it. it seems a lot of work to do just to keep them flexible even though they wont do it on their own and i will have to do this till i die. i stopped the morphine several months after the accident.

with compassion and hope, arlene

 
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Old 02-01-2010, 05:25 PM   #10
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Re: i would like to communicate with anyone else who has damaged their ulnar nerve.

i pity you my was done back on 2000 and my life changed from that day i now live for pain mangment and live on pain killers but i also will say it also effected other nerves along with my ulnar nerve i pray for you that you dont have the problems i have had i am now 43 and live on disability and get Screwed by workers comp every month and i will tell you aafter so long on the meds your body builds a tolerance and all they can do is keep uping them or prescribe something stronger it is best to try to put up with it till it intolerable because if not you will be on some real bad ****

 
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Old 02-02-2010, 09:01 AM   #11
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Re: i would like to communicate with anyone else who has damaged their ulnar nerve.

Quote:
Originally Posted by arleneclaire View Post
hi holly, and thanks for your reply. its been so long that i had forgotten about this site, but not about my injury. unfortunately, it bothers me every day, and i grieve the loss of the function of this left hand enormously. i am totally thanful that i am right handed, so the loss is less extreme. i am now typing with both hands, the ring finger can press down, but it feels wierd still. i have finally obtained a brace for the hand which keeps the fingers extended while i sleep. i have been told to continue to work at keeping the fingers in motion even though the chances are almost nonexistant that they will ever function normally again. the baby finger is totally useless, but the ring finger can do some small stuff, but it curls under and is almost impossible to straigten out even with huge force.

i would like very much to hear from your husband, or yourself about how he is coping. i do not have much pain, although it is always an irritationg burning buzzing feeling going on in my hand. i feel so much grief over it. it seems a lot of work to do just to keep them flexible even though they wont do it on their own and i will have to do this till i die. i stopped the morphine several months after the accident.

with compassion and hope, arlene

 
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Old 02-02-2010, 09:38 AM   #12
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Re: i would like to communicate with anyone else who has damaged their ulnar nerve.

Quote:
Originally Posted by arleneclaire View Post
hi holly, and thanks for your reply. its been so long that i had forgotten about this site, but not about my injury. unfortunately, it bothers me every day, and i grieve the loss of the function of this left hand enormously. i am totally thanful that i am right handed, so the loss is less extreme. i am now typing with both hands, the ring finger can press down, but it feels wierd still. i have finally obtained a brace for the hand which keeps the fingers extended while i sleep. i have been told to continue to work at keeping the fingers in motion even though the chances are almost nonexistant that they will ever function normally again. the baby finger is totally useless, but the ring finger can do some small stuff, but it curls under and is almost impossible to straigten out even with huge force.

i would like very much to hear from your husband, or yourself about how he is coping. i do not have much pain, although it is always an irritationg burning buzzing feeling going on in my hand. i feel so much grief over it. it seems a lot of work to do just to keep them flexible even though they wont do it on their own and i will have to do this till i die. i stopped the morphine several months after the accident.

with compassion and hope, arlene
Hi Arlene,

You are in Canada aren't you? We are Canadians now working in South Florida. The pain that Rick has suffered and is suffering from his ulnar nerve is almost unbearable. He severed his left ulnar nerve, like you, but he is left handed. He is able to function quite well, through incredible determination.
I don't think that his hands stop him from doing anything that he sets his mind to. It is dealing with the pain that has been the most difficult. For the first 11 years, he only took a pain pill at night. He found that he would take the buzzing energy from his arm, and work non stop, always hyper active, turning the pain energy into productivity. He has decided lately, that he doesn't want to handle the intense energy anymore, so is taking pain pills when he feels the pain start (viocodine). I can't really say that the pain pills are doing as much as we would like them too, and there is always the fear of them not working as well over time. I hope that you are luckier, in that you severed the nerve, on your less active hand. Rick over the years has also gone to a acupuncturist/homeopathic/osteopath/MD who has stimulated the nerve with various treatments, which are really painful for Rick. Right now, Rick thinks that the nerve may be healing somewhat, as he associates extreme pain with healing. I hope that he is right.

Ricks' small finger is mostly atrophied, he has quite a bit of use of his ring finger. Keep up with any exercises that are recommended, as I am sure you know, the ulnar nerve supplies strength to the hand. Rick's nerve was severed 90%,(I left a knife blade up in the kitchen cutlery rack, which was above the paper towel roll, Rick reached for a paper towel and impaled his arm on the knife) he did not receive the proper medical treatment, for about a week, as the emergency room dr, did not know that the nerve was severed.
His nerve was reconnected after a week. This may be the reason for the intense pain. There is so little known about nerves, I guess the major hope would be stem cell research, which has been known to regrow nerves.

Unfortunately, Rick is going through a very bad bout of pain right now, hence the kind of down mood to this posting. He has over the past 12 years, been almost normal, and functioned very well. I am hoping that this stage will pass.

Grieving for your hand is a positive thing to do, Rick did the same. Keep upbeat Arlene, there are worse things in life that can happen. For every difficulty there is a corresponding outcome somewhere, be it in learning compassion and patience, wisdom and understanding. Every pain feeds our souls, it is the hardship in life, that makes deeper, and ultimately gives us a more satisfying soul life.

Please keep in touch and feel free to ask any questions.

Holly

 
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Old 02-02-2010, 10:58 AM   #13
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Re: i would like to communicate with anyone else who has damaged their ulnar nerve.

Hi Arlene,

One more thing, Rick really advises seeing an acupuncturist or an osteopath (not sure if there are any in Canada) although painful, he does feel that the treatment really caused the nerve to grow, giving him more agility in his ring finger.

Holly

 
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Old 02-07-2010, 12:08 PM   #14
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Re: i would like to communicate with anyone else who has damaged their ulnar nerve.

yea i know all about your fingers curling my is severe they wanted to do syrgery but i have had 8 syrgeries on both arms so i am reluctant to have anymore i try to cope with what i have and try to tolerate much pain but you should also see a doctor for depression also because the stress causes much depression and it helps to know that you are not the only one like i have told others i hope and pray that you dont go through what i have my life is ruined because i woke up and went to work and the employer couldnt follows directions and then left me set in there office instead of taking me for immediate medical care i have filed lawsuits but they have been in ligations for over 8 years now and workers comp just screws the hell out of you so and they tell you try to smile

 
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Old 02-09-2010, 05:41 AM   #15
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Re: i would like to communicate with anyone else who has damaged their ulnar nerve.

Hi,

I fell on a glass in my kitchen in october 2008 and severed my ulnar nerve and artery about four inches down from my wrist, I had surgery 4 days later to repair the artery and the nerve. The prognosis was that my nerve would regrow at around 1mm per day, it is now 15 months after the surgery. The main problem for me is the muslces in my hand, when i severed the nerve these all wasted away, the muscle between my thumb and index finger being the most evident as it was the largest. I still have almost no lateral control over my middle, ring and pinky fingers, at first the doctors said it would take two years for me to recover, and after that improvement was unlikely, but now they tell me that it can take up to 5 years for the small muscles in the hand to heal. I have noticed improvemnt in pinching strength between thumb and forefinger, the muscle has definately began to grow back as it feels stronger and looks a little better than it did, however i still have little or no improvement in my finger dexterity. I also find it extremely depressing as I am, or was, a keen musician and now playing guitar or piano is horribly frustrating. Did you try going to an acupuncturist or osteopath? Someone suggested it in a previous response, i was thinking about going down that road so i was wondering if you had had any sucess with it? I hope you get this response, please write back.

Ian

 
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