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  • Nerve conduction test showed nothing but I have symptoms (ulnar nerve symptoms)

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    Old 01-25-2008, 02:39 PM   #1
    jaderiver's Avatar
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    Nerve conduction test showed nothing but I have symptoms (ulnar nerve symptoms)

    Here is some background.. sorry this is so long..

    Winter of 2006 I experienced some twitching of my left little finger, mild burning pain. Eventually I had some muscle wasting. I was sent for a nerve conduction test which showed severe compression. At the time I was surprised because my symptoms weren't that bothersome. I had surgery for ulnar nerve compression, left elbow. Surgeon decompressed the area.

    After surgery everything seemed to improve over time. Then for whatever reason, my symptoms came back. Probably about 6-7 months after surgery. My family doctor didn't say much but eventually sent me for another nerve conduction test which would be almost a year after the surgery. It showed mild compression. I was told to do conservative treatment- not lean on my elbow, wrapping my arm in a towel at night etc etc. My symptoms didn't improve, worsening slowly.

    I eventually was referred to a plastic surgeon (new surgeon, previous one retired plus new one not a hand surgeon). I had surgery September 2007. She decompresed the nerve but also removed a small piece of bone from the groove area? to make more room for the nerve. After surgery things were going better. I still had some numbness in little finger and mild burning but it had improved compared to before surgery. Also has a electrical sensation before and somewhat after surgery.

    Unfortunately I was injured around Novemeber 4,2007 and everything seemed to go downhill. Although I didn't break my arm, I did have quite a bit of bruising. Since that injury I have experienced burning pain in the palm of my hand below little and ring finger. It gets worse when I make a fist or curl my fingers. My little and ring finger have increased in numbness. Bending my elbow seems to send an electrical signal up my arm towards wrist.

    I did see the surgeon about a month after the injury. She didn't have much to say at the time, told me to come back in a month's time. I did and then she mentioned about sending me for a nerve conduction test. She said that she could do another surgery but won't guarantee it will improve things. Said it may improve significantly, only a little, or not at all. Depending on the NC test or if my symptoms are still the same, we can discuss options when I go back to see her.

    So today I had my nerve conduction test. The neurologist said my nerve is fine.

    I also go for physiotherapy. The therapist was saying these NC tests are just a guideline. He's heard of clients who have little symptoms yet the NC test shows severe compression. Other clients have burning pain, other symptoms that bother them, NC tests show nothing is wrong or little.

    I can't understand what is going on. I have burning pain that is very bothersome. I get the electrical signal traveling up my arm when I bend it, increased numbness.

    None of these symptoms have improved. I have been following conservative methods since the injury to see if it helps.

    So has anyone else had a NC test that showed nothing was wrong and yet had symptoms?

    I go back to see the surgeon near the end of February.

    I am debating about another surgery. I feel if I don't have it I may always wonder if I did go through with it maybe it would help. I am willing to try it again.

    I heard there are a few types of surgery for this problem. First surgery was decompression, second one decompression plus removal of small piece of bone in groove area.

    Thanks for your help

    Last edited by jaderiver; 01-25-2008 at 02:42 PM.

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