Nerve Entrapment (lateral)

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Nerve Entrapment (lateral)

 

INJURY OVERVIEW

Often confused with Tennis Elbow, lateral nerve entrapment (radial nerve) can have very similar symptoms especially in the early stages.  Simply put, it is due to a pinching of neural tissue by one or more structures around the outside of your elbow.

 

INJURY IN-DEPTH INFORMATION

The radial nerve comes out of your neck and passes down your arm along the following path (show this in the video).  At the point of the outside elbow the nerve separates and part of it passes into an area where it can be compressed by usually 4 different structures.

 

The compression of the nerve is unlikely to cause actual nerve damage but it will disrupt the blood flow to the nerve.  Blood entres the nerve under very low pressure and so it is relatively easy for this to overcome.  Should this happen, vital oxygen cannot get to the nerve and also waste products cannot be removed.  After a certain point this will certainly be felt as pain.

 

COMMON SIGNS & SYMPTOMS

A list of common signs & symptoms. Keep each one short and sweet i.e.

  • Pain outside elbow
  • Pain on gripping
  • Pain on resisted supination (perhaps show this)
  • Tender about 4 finger widths from that of the usual site of Tennis Elbow
  • Pain referred into the back of the hand
  • Pins and Needles and/or numbness

 

HOW IS IT ASSESSED

Thorough clinical examination that will look at all the common points of contact for the nerve (show this??), from the neck to the hand.

The integrity of your nerves should be tested and also their ability to move well. 

Muscle strength and throughout the limb will be assessed

Also you ability to perform resisted wrist and elbow movements (do they replicate your pain)

 

 

 

GENERAL TREATMENT

Treatment will usually consist of manual therapy (massage and stretching) to the muscles that give rise to supination (show this).

Use of acupuncture needles for this can be very effective

Specific exercises that promote mobility of the neural tissue involved will also help.

If this is unsuccessful then there is a surgical option, but this is best handled conservatively.

 

Exercise Videos: i.e.

  • Sliders and gliders
  • Common extensor and supinator stretches.

 

WHICH HEALTH PROFESSIONAL TO CONSULT

PHYSIO     X

MEDIC     X

PODIATRY     

 

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