Common Forms of Hand Compression Neuropathies in Houston, TX


Compression Neuropathies occur when nerve fibers are unable to transmit messages properly due to direct or indirect compression. Common forms of compression neuropathies include Carpal Tunnel Syndrome (discussed previously), Cubital Tunnel Syndrome, and Radial Tunnel Syndrome. Symptoms include stabbing or sharp pain, numbness or a tingling feeling in the affected area along with muscle weakness.

Carpal Tunnel Syndrome: disorder caused by the compression of the median nerve at the wrist. The condition causes tingling, pain and numbness of the index, middle and ring fingers, as well as sensations of tingling or burning in the arm.

Treatment Options for Carpal Tunnel Syndrome:

  • Changing work habits or work positions.
  • Splinting of the wrist.
  • Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs to reduce pain and swelling.
  • Steroid injections for long-term relief of symptoms.
  • Surgery to release pressure on the median nerve.

Cubital Tunnel Syndrome: condition caused by the compression of the ulnar nerve at the elbow. It commonly occurs in baseball pitchers and cyclists due to extensive bending of and leaning on the elbows. Symptoms include a "pins and needles" sensation of the ring and pinky fingers as well as pain and numbness in the elbow. Eventually, weakness in the ring and pinky fingers may develop as well.

Treatment Options for Cubital Tunnel Syndrome:

  • Physical Therapy and behavior modification
  • Splinting of the elbow.
  • Wearing an elbow pad
  • Surgery to release tension on the ulnar nerve.

Radial Tunnel Syndrome: condition caused by the compression of the radial nerve in the forearm or the back of the elbow. It can be caused by inflammation of the surrounding muscle, injury, bone tumors, or lipomas (non cancerous fatty tumors). Symptoms include stabbing pain in the forearm and back of the hand, particularly when the patient is straightening the wrist or fingers.

Treatment Options for Radial Tunnel Syndrome:

  • Behavior modification
  • Splinting to keep the wrist from rotating and elbow straight.
  • Surgery to release pressure on the radial nerve.

Houston hand surgeon Dr. Fiore is board certified by the American Board of Surgery and fellowship trained in hand and microsurgery. For more information about compression neuropathies, or to schedule a consultation, call Fiore Hand & Wrist Surgical Associates at (281) 970-8002.

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