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Hi! Well I had ulnar nerve transposition surgery, carpal tunnel & Guyon's canal release all on my right arm on 11/4/09. I just want to say I am (at 12/1) still having some numbness also, around the elbow, and sometimes the areas of numbness move & shift along with the areas of pain. Right now it is like a 4 inch "band' of numbess/swelling above the elbow on the bottom portion of arm that doesn't feel right...but sometimes it's a football shaped area around the elbow...and sometimes it shifts.

I still can't rest my lower arm on a table, for example....well sometimes I can, for a little while - this is just starting to get better. However, the doctor told me today that I was proceeding normally. I still have some swelling and he also said that was normal. I still take one pain pill per day, at bedtime (Lortab 7.5). I went back to work the week before Thanksgiving - for 3 days - and worked Thanksgiving week for 3 days - now I am back to 5 days per week. The doctor had given me a note off until 12/1...(today) but I went back early - needed the $$$$. They just told me to wear my carpal tunnel brace when typing or driving....until today I was to wear it all the time.

They cut through small peripheral nerves when they do the surgery, and that's why we can go numb, but feeling should be restored eventually. The nerves grow back slowly.

I never had much pain at all before the surgery, only muscle weakness in my hand. Mine has been going on about 20 years before I had surgery. My ulnar incision is about 10 inches long!!!! How long is yours? And did they go under the muscle with your ulnar nerve, or just put it under the skin? Mine is just under the skin. Those operations heal faster than the sub-muscular ones. He told me my muscle was too big (!) to put the nerve there.

Hope to hear back from you! And happy healing :)...I hope you feel better soon!

P. S. I am just now able to put some weight on that arm and I am so glad. For example, getting out of the bathtub was rather hard without using the right hand/arm to lift me out. Now I can use it. I was beginning to wonder..because it seemed I was getting better so slowly. But everyone heals differently and so long as you stay on track with your doctor and follow that advice, I think your healing will proceed normally. However, the numbness you describe sounds like it may extend into more area than mine...it may be due to the nature of your particular surgery...but if you have questions like this, I would call your doctor's office and just leave a message for the nurse or the PA asking if they could ask if this is normal. It probably IS normal, but it never hurts to ask. Good luck!

P. P. S. Don't get discouraged. There was one weekend where I just cried & cried, I felt so awful, just awful, and it makes you feel worried you won't be able to use your arm correctly ever again. My advice is just focus on the healing, and resting of your arm. Don't sweat the other stuff. Give yourself a break on the bad days and realize that they will pass. They have for me and I was really worried there for a while!
Hi,

I had my carpal tunnel, ulnar nerve transposition & Guyan's canal surgery done in October, 2009. This is in response to Chip...my hand is probably now very similar to its condition before the surgery, but I am having additional tingling also - and I think - that that is probably good - means the nerves are coming back - and I think - and hope - that eventually after more months of healing - it will be better. I hope. The nerves heal at the rate of 1 mm per day...and from the elbow down the arm (my incision was l0 inches) - that's a lot of healing to be done before I see any result down in my hand...so just want to say hang in there.....

OK I just did some rough math - and in my situation - and assuming my ulnar nerve was damaged for the whole length of the l0 inch incision - then at 1 mm per day healing rate - if 1 mm = 1/10 of a cm then for each month approx 3 cm of nerve length healing is acquired - so in about 9 months that would allow time for about 27 cm to be healed (and 25.4 cm = 10 inches)...so I should expect improvement 9 months from the surgery - then after that - the muscle would begin to come back in my hand...but...that's just my figuring and nothing medical or scientific about that!!! Other than to say - it does take time.
I had ulnar nerve transposition and guyans canal release surgery 2/08. I am two years now post op. YAY! One thing you all must understand and hopefully this will serve to encourage you too, is that nerves take a while to heal. I would say, honestly, that I was well over a year before I my hand actually performed like I believed it should. My grip strength comes and goes. It seems it has a lot to with a cervical injury, if my neck is irritated, then the hand, pinkie and ring finger are weaker and the clumsiness of say dropping a telephone once again remind me, even though I am so much better than before surgery, I am not 100%. I would say my hand operates at about 60% strength as before and that is my new bar of 100%. I am 100% I always say. Attitude is crucial in dealing with a repaired body. The damage to my arm was from a t-boned auto accident. The impact threw me up against the door. Amazing how much damage, soft tissue, can happen in an instant.
It is difficult for many people to accept that they will have issues with healing and that the textbook replies of doctors about general healing time, may or may not apply to them. I certainly know the frustrations of that. I have eventually relearned how to grasp things to insure I don't drop them and am successful the majority of the time. It has eventually become a natural way for me to do things. My hand does become tired at times and I always know when the weather is going to change, I feel it deep in my elbow. The incision at the elbow is still numb, in a 2" by 5" area. I don't really notice it, unless there is an itch deep under the tissue, which oddly enough happens from time to time.
Hang in there folks and keep the dialogue coming.
Rose
My husband had surgery on his in July of 2009 and Workers Comp said he has 10% total body imparment. His arm still hurts and goes numb everyday. Every case is different and I have been told several times that nerve damage takes a long time to heal. Hope you get better soon





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