Chủ Nhật, 13 tháng 10, 2013

Numbness in Fingers – Causes and Treatment

Numbness in Fingers – Causes and Treatment

Numbness in Fingers – Causes


Numbness of the fingers normally is because of conditions which affect the nerves and/or blood system which supply that hand. Numbness of the fingers is also often associated with tingling. These symptoms are referred to as parasthesia of the fingers.


Numbness in fingers and thumb is actually a typical sign of carpal tunnel syndrome, also known as CTS. Other symptoms include tingling or burning pain in the hands.


To appreciate CTS better, the anatomy of the wrist must be understood. The bones in the wrist are known as carpal bones and, together with a ligament, this all forms a tunnel where the median nerve as well as several tendons runs thru. This median nerve is the nerve that deliveries the feeling to the thumb side of the hand; if the nerve becomes compressed in that tunnel, numbness or tingling can occur in the fingers and thumb.


Many factors can cause the median nerve to become compressed. Long-lasting arthritis could have developed spurs on the carpal bones, causing the nerve to be trapped and all of this results in numbness of fingers. Any type of inflammation from arthritis can also result in swelling to develop in the carpal tunnel, and this also compresses the nerve. Actually, arthritis-related illnesses, such as gout, rheumatoid arthritis, as well as pseudogout are all common sources of CTS.


If an individual has one of these diseases, the best way to manage the symptoms of CTS is to treat the underlying disease. However, often CTS is not a symptom but the cause of the numbing and simply is caused by overdoing the use of the wrist such as happens when working on a computer.
Causes of Numbness Fingers



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  • Carpal tunnel syndrome/tarsal tunnel syndrome

  • Leprosy

  • Frostbite

  • Multiple sclerosis

  • Peripheral vascular disease

  • Peripheral neuropathy

  • Pinched nerve

  • Raynaud’s phenomenon

  • Radiculopathy

  • Shingles

  • Vasculitis

  • Thoracic outlet syndrome


Other Causes of Numbness Fingers:



  • Blood vessel obstruction of upper extremity

  • Hand trauma such as injury from Jack Hammer use, etc.

  • Hyperventilation

  • Ulnar nerve entrapment


Numbness in Fingers – Treatment


Some individuals experience pain – extreme pain – alongside finger numbness that can arise in any finger or fingers. It is imperative to figure out the fingers where the feelings occur. This is a way to aid in the correct diagnosis of the disease that is initiating these sensations. This disease can then be treated and alleviated, provided the diagnosis is correct. With nerve damage usually the cause most common, other medical situations can also cause finger numbness. Below are some examples of a problem occurring in one place causing tingling or numbness in the hand or finger.


Any injury to the higher spinal cord or damage to the nerves of the arms can cause numbness in the fingers, wrist and hand. Beside carpal tunnel syndrome, an injury to the neck can also cause the numbness in the fingers, arms or hands. Pressure to the elbow or chest can distress the operation of the ulnar nerve, and causing numbness in fingers – especially the 4th and 5th finger. There are some cases where impairment to the peripheral nerves – peripheral neuropathy – may be the reason for finger numbness. Nerve injury likewise can be produced by excess drinking of alcohol – alcoholic neuropathy. Both diabetic neuropathy which is the nerve loss caused by diabetes and diabetic peripheral neuropathy can be the basis of numbness of the finger.


In most of these above conditions, the underlying problem must be treated first.


In the treatment of carpal tunnel syndrome or CTS the following are important:



  • Use wrist braces, particularly at night;

  • Have intermittent steroid injections to decrease swelling

  • Avoiding actions that intensify the symptoms


While these treatment options can normally be successful for a long period of time and can offer relief in many cases, there are still cases which are more severe and may require surgery. There is an operation involving opening up the diagonal carpal tendon and this in turn frees the median nerve where it has been trapped. In the majority of cases it can get rid of the symptoms.













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