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What is ulnar nerve entrapment?

Cubital tunnel syndrome involves the ulnar nerve, which is known by most as the "funny bone." Indeed, it can feel rather funny to get your ulnar nerve jolted by a sudden bump against a doorway, but it is not a laughing matter when damage to the ulnar nerve makes it impossible for you to do your job.

The ulnar nerve runs down from your neck, through your arm and to your hand and fingers. If this nerve gets constricted under your collar bone, at your wrist, or behind the elbow, it can cause pain, numbness and lack of mobility in your hand, wrist and arm. When the ulnar nerve gets compressed in the elbow, the condition is referred to as "cubital tunnel syndrome." No, this disorder is not caused by working in a "cubical," but office workers might have a hard time dealing with the condition if it affects their ability to operate their computers.

In the majority of cases, bracing and lifestyle changes are sufficient to treat the tingling and numbness associated with cubital tunnel syndrome. However, surgery may be necessary in cases that result in muscle weakness or hand damage. Generally, results from surgery to correct ulnar nerve compression are favorable, but patients may need to put their affected arms in splints for three to six weeks following the procedure. Physical therapy exercises and/or temporary cessation of normal activities may also be recommended to the patient.

New York workers who rely heavily on the use of their hands during their jobs may have difficulty carrying out their job duties while recovering from their cubital tunnel syndrome. In order to pay for time out of work and associated medical care, these workers might be able to receive workers' compensation benefits through the assistance of an experienced workers' compensation lawyer.

Source: American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons, "Ulnar Nerve Entrapment at the Elbow (Cubital Tunnel Syndrome)," accessed June 03, 2016

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