What is ulnar nerve compression?
Ulnar nerve compression, or entrapment, is a relatively common injury that affects a major nerve in the brachial plexus system. The ulnar nerve, which provides sensation and motor function to the hand, originates in the neck and extends through the shoulder, down the arm and into the hand and fingers.
While the ulnar nerve can potentially become irritated or pressured at any point along its pathway, the most common site of entrapment is the inner part of the elbow (a condition known as cubital tunnel syndrome). The second most common site is at or near the wrist. Ulnar nerve compression can result from arthritis, fluid buildup, bone spurs or swelling, as well as repetitive bending and straightening of the elbow or leaning on the elbow for an extended period of time.
What are the symptoms of ulnar nerve compression?
Ulnar nerve entrapment can cause discomfort in the arm, elbow, hand or fingers. In addition to pain and tenderness, some common symptoms include:
- Numbness and tingling sensations in the ring and pinkie fingers
- A weak grip
- Difficulty controlling the fingers when performing precise tasks, such as typing or playing a musical instrument
- Sensitivity to cold temperatures
How is ulnar nerve compression treated?
Treatment for ulnar nerve entrapment can vary depending on the severity of the resulting symptoms. A physician may recommend a physical therapy program designed to strengthen the ligaments and tendons in the elbow and hand. A brace or splint can be worn to limit arm and hand movement as the injury heals, and also to prevent the damage from worsening. Oral anti-inflammatory medications can be taken as needed to relieve pain and inflammation. In severe cases, a physician may recommend a surgical procedure on the elbow or wrist to reduce pressure on the ulnar nerve.
If you’re ready to explore your treatment options for ulnar nerve compression, contact Advanced Orthopaedics & Sports Medicine of Houston, TX, to request an appointment. We’re committed to helping our patients find effective relief from painful orthopedic conditions.
To request an appointment, please enter the information on the form on the right and press the “Continue” button to start the appointment request process.
1Professional Building II At North Cypress Medical Center
2North Cypress Professional Building At Lakewood Crossing
3North Cypress Professional Building At Towne Lake
4Advanced Orthopaedics Memorial
What Our Patients Are Saying
Dr. Mills is a great hand specialist. He gets right to the point and is very kind to offer exercises to do to get my full range of motion back.
I have been fighting chronic knee pain for ten years following a knee replacement, a bone infection, and subsequent knee revision surgery. After a number of failed solutions to pain relief, Dr. Patel introduced me to RF
Dr. Mohr and his staff are very friendly people. They treated my father very well and made him feel comfortable in his uncomfortable situation.
Dr. Patel is a very good Pain Management Doctor. She is one of my favorite doctors.
They are very professional and attentive. I was having shoulder pain. The wait was short and staff very kind.
Great experience with Dr. Tanous and staff. Telling our entire family and friends about my husband Mel ‘s injury and the kind and expert care we received . Our thanks and appreciation .
Yes, I would certainly recommend Advanced Orthopedics & Sports Medicine to family & friends.
It has been eight weeks since my partial knee replacement and now I realized just how much I was missing. Having it done has made such a difference to my life. For a start my leg is now straight and my knees actually touch!
Dr. Cubbage & Staff replaced a disc that had been destroyed between my 4th and 5th vertebra. This is my 4th month since the surgery in January of 2018. I was very impressed with their dedication
Doctor Brooks is the best. His advice to get lubricant injected into my knees has made my life so much better. Kudos!