Cubital Tunnel Syndrome and Poor Circulation in Hands

Cubital Tunnel Syndrome and Poor Circulation

The ulnar nerve passes through the elbow, under a bone, in an area that many people refer to as the “funny bone.” It is in this area that cubital tunnel syndrome can occur. Because of its location, there is susceptibility for increased pressure on the sensitive nerve that runs through this area and, when that pressure increases, symptoms can result as the first signs of the condition. Many times, injury and over use are the most common causes of the condition.

The symptoms of cubital tunnel syndrome include numbness and tingling as well as pain from the affected area, through the arm and down into the hands and the fingers. These can be mistaken in some cases for peripheral neuropathy if they are persistent. Peripheral neuropathy is a result of nerve damage caused from illness, infection or injury. And, sometimes the neuropathy affects the arms and hands. Symptoms are similar in both occurrences with discomfort, tingling and numbness being the most common according to American Society for Surgery of the Hand.

Cubital tunnel syndrome is related to circulation as the condition can cause stretching of the ulnar nerve, according to Tomiano Orthopedics. If the nerve stretches too far, then poor circulation within the nerve can result. But, unlike carpal tunnel syndrome which can actually be caused by decreased hand circulation, the elbow affecting syndrome is primarily caused by physical action. Hand circulation can however be impacted by persons encountering Cubital Tunnel Syndrome as the ulnar nerve that is affected does run into the hands. Although circulatory function can be decreased, it can often be improved if the physical activity causing the symptoms is ceased.

Typically, poor circulation in hands can be remedied with home care and lifestyle changes as well as wrist guards and other apparatuses targeted towards maintaining the natural and healthy position of the hands. Increasing physical activity is one of the best ways to stave off circulation problems, however in persons with cubital tunnel syndrome; this should exclude overuse of the affected elbow. There are other methods to providing some relief to circulation problems as well including vitamins and natural supplements geared towards providing good circulatory health for a wide variety of poor circulation causes. For instance, B vitamins as well as vitamin C and vitamin E are thought to provide many benefits to the body’s blood pumping system. And, herbs like horse chestnut, cayenne, parsley and gingko biloba are also thought to provide relief from many circulation problems and their related underlying causes like small fiber neuropathy as well.

But, because over time cubital tunnel syndrome can worsen and require surgical intervention, it is important to seek medical care if symptoms are persistent or worsening. A delay in this can mean that the condition can worsen to the point that surgical treatment may be the only option, according to Tomiano Orthopedics. If the condition is allowed to progress, the effects of surgery may be less effective. As such, when symptoms become persistent or bothersome or seem to be affecting circulation in the hands, it is always best to seek the advice of a health care provider.