Why is My Hand Numb?

Woman Holding Numb Hand

Most people, throughout their life, have experienced hand pain. Overusing from repetitive tasks, an accident, or exposure to extreme temperatures can cause hand pain. However, if that pain is accompanied by numbness, a tingling sensation, and a weakness that has disabled you, then an underlying medical condition may be at hand. Those with hand numbness can cause a loss of light touch, temperature, pain, and vibration sensations. It can be felt in parts of the hand, or throughout the entire hand, but all of which indicate some form of damage to the sensory nerves, spinal nerve roots, spinal cord, or the brain. These sensory receptors are essential for detecting information throughout the body and act as a warning system for underlying conditions.

However, when the numbness seems unexplained, that’s why neurologists work to study and treat the nervous system and many of the conditions that affect the lives of individuals each day. With that in mind, some of the conditions that can be considered a potential cause for your numbness:

  • Carpel Tunnel Syndrome – When the median nerve is irritated or compressed, the bundles of tendons and ligaments in and around the hand can cause tingling, numbing sensations. The median nerve is the nerve that connects your forearm to your wrist, providing sensation to the thumbs and fingers. Anything that places pressure on the median nerve can lead to these conditions.
  • Cervical Radiculopathy – similar to carpal tunnel syndrome, cervical radiculopathy occurs when the neck’s cervical nerve root becomes inflamed or compressed. This inflammation can occur from a herniated disc or a bone spur, causing pain and numbness throughout the shoulders, arms, hands, and fingers. Unlike carpel tunnel syndrome, these symptoms also affect areas higher up the arm and add additional pain and numbness.
  • Spinal Cord Injury – A spinal cord injury can create permanent changes to the sensations and strength of body functions, including the hands. Any recent spinal cord injury can cause hand numbness depending on the location and severity of the injury. In this case, it’s an emergency that should be treated by a medical professional. Call 911, or call your local emergency medical assistance number to prevent serious complications.
  • Peripheral Neuropathy – The peripheral nerves, or nerves that exist outside of the brain and spinal cord, can also cause weakness, numbness, and pain in the hands and feet. This condition can result from various causes, with one of the most common ones being diabetes. This stabbing, tingling, burning pain can accompany hand numbness, and when present, should be looked at by a neurologist to determine its cause.

Seeing your doctor is the best form of treatment for your pain, as they can help treat your hand numbness with treatment plans and medications under medical supervision. If you have hand pain and numbness and wish to find treatment, contact Dr. Tom Bromberg at Delaware Valley Pain & Spine Institute in Chalfont, PA, for more information. Schedule an appointment today to receive comprehensive spine and pain care.

Dr. Todd A. Bromberg, M.D. When chronic pain and spinal issues impact your quality of life, you need a team of crack spine and pain specialists at your disposal. Delaware Valley Pain & Spine Institute works with some of the most respected experts in the field to bring pain relief and restored quality of life to patients in Pennsylvania and New Jersey!
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