Cubital tunnel syndrome, also known as ulnar neuropathy, occurs when there is increased pressure on the ulnar nerve (which runs across the elbow), causing it to become swollen or inflamed.
Cubital tunnel syndrome can develop if you bend your elbows for prolonged periods (such as while holding a phone or sleeping) or lean on your elbows repeatedly. This condition can also be caused by arthritis or past elbow fractures.
What are the symptoms of cubital tunnel syndrome?
CTS can cause the following symptoms:
- Numbness or tingling in the hands and fingers.
- Muscle weakness in the hands and arms.
- Pain on the inside of the elbows.
How is cubital tunnel syndrome diagnosed?
During your consultation, our orthopedic doctor will review your medical history, perform a physical examination, run tests such as nerve testing to determine whether the nerve is compressed, and take X-ray images to examine the bones of the elbow.
How is cubital tunnel syndrome treated?
Stopping the activity inducing the symptoms is the most effective treatment for cubital tunnel syndrome. Cubital tunnel syndrome can usually be treated by getting plenty of rest, taking anti-inflammatory medication, or wearing a splint.
If these treatments do not work, our orthopedic specialist may suggest trying injections of corticosteroids to help reduce pain and swelling.
In some cases, surgery may be required to relieve the pressure on the nerve.
Procedures performed to treat cubital tunnel syndrome include:
Cubital tunnel release:
This procedure involves cutting and separating your ligament to expand the cubital tunnel and relieve pressure on the nerve. The ligament begins to repair, and new tissue forms across the split.
Ulnar nerve anterior transposition:
During this procedure, the surgeon divides the ligament covering the cubital tunnel to increase the tunnel size and decrease pressure on the nerve.
As you recover, the ligament starts to heal and new tissue grows across the division. The new growth heals the ligament and allows more space for the ulnar nerve to slide through.
The surgeon performs this outpatient procedure under general or regional anesthesia to remove the medial epicondyle, the bony bump on the inner side of the elbow, to alleviate compression of the ulnar nerve.
What to expect after the procedure?
Following surgery, you may need to wear a splint for a few weeks while recovering. Our surgeon may recommend doing physical therapy exercises to help you regain arm strength and motion. The time it takes to recover varies, depending on the type of surgery you had.
Schedule your appointment at Novomed today
If you are experiencing cubital tunnel syndrome symptoms, make an appointment with one of our highly qualified orthopedic doctors in Dubai or Al Ain to learn more about your condition and treatment options.
Book your consultation today by calling toll-free 8006686, filling out the booking form, or clicking the live chat icon at the bottom of the screen.