If an activity that you love to do causes you pain, should you give up that activity altogether, or do you search for treatments? In this Ask Dr. Geier video, I answer that question for someone with ulnar nerve subluxation of the elbow.

Jacques asks:
I suffer from subluxation of the ulnar nerve. I called it guitar elbow since I first experienced it while playing the guitar. I’ve had the condition for about 33 years now, and it is getting worse. It easily gets aggravated when I hold and twist something with my left hand. After the nerve flips over the bone a few times, I feel a little electricity-type feeling in my arm and my hand. This will prevent me from using a cell phone with my left hand. It is terrible. I just use my left hand for holding and carrying and avoid and kind of twisting under pressure with it. I’ve given up hope of healing, my guitar is now for sale.

The ulnar nerve is the nerve on the inside of your elbow. It rests behind the bony prominence on the inside of the elbow – the medial epicondyle. That is the nerve you hit when you hit your “funny bone.”

In some people, the nerve slides back and forth across that bony process – ulnar nerve subluxation. That alone can be uncomfortable. It can also cause numbness and tingling in the ringer and little finger.

Fortunately, there are surgical treatments to hold the nerve in place and decrease irritation of the nerve. In this video, I describe those surgeries and return to activity.

Man with elbow pain from ulnar nerve subluxation

Also read:
Ask Dr. Geier – Snapping nerve in the elbow
Ask Dr. Geier – Stress injuries of the elbow

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