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    Hello Friends. I'm having pain in my arms and hands at night. It feels like they are "asleep" with sharp pains..if that makes any sense at all. It usually only happens when I'm laying down. I wake up from the tingling pain and hold them in the air to help ease whatever it is that is happening. Any ideas or suggestions? I am T-10 complete for over 17 years.
    DFW TEXAS- T-10 since March 20th, 1994

  • #2
    Where exactly is the pain in your hands? This may fit the pattern of carpal tunnel syndrome (CTS). It is common that the pain would be worse at night.

    (KLD)
    The SCI-Nurses are advanced practice nurses specializing in SCI/D care. They are available to answer questions, provide education, and make suggestions which you should always discuss with your physician/primary health care provider before implementing. Medical diagnosis is not provided, nor do the SCI-Nurses provide nursing or medical care through their responses on the CareCure forums.

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    • #3
      Carpel Tunnel does sound like a possibility. When I had similar symptoms about a decade or so ago , I wore these elastic wrist splints/protectors (that had a metal plate running up the center to shield the wrist and lower palm; I hated them but I think they helped some) for several hours a day along with really monitoring how much I used my arms/hands and making some adjustments and the symptoms went away and have not returned.
      Last edited by Patton57; 07-12-2011, 11:50 AM.

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      • #4
        The pain is mostly in my arms rather than hands. My hands tend to feel more "asleep" and tingly with sharp pains being in my arms and occassionally shooting down to the hands. I can't sleep on my side for very long because my arms get very uncomfortable. I've never been able to sleep on my back very much since my accident 17 years ago. Would carpel tunnel affect the arms. I always thought it was just a hand/wrist thing.
        DFW TEXAS- T-10 since March 20th, 1994

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        • #5
          I get that because I tend to sleep with my arms bent at the elbow, I believe it is due to the ulnar nerve (funny bone) being pinched through my elbow.... annoying for sure, must wake up a couple times a night in order to straighten my arms for a bit.... not as annoying as sleeping with my arms straight though!
          Emily, C-8 sensory incomplete mom to a 8 year old and a preschooler. TEN! years post.

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          • #6
            I have pain like this. my shoulder is bad, and also the elbow where the funny bone is. I have learned also that there is some sort of cyst in my cervical area at around c-5.
            maybe see about your elbows, or shoulders. mine are affected by years of crutches.

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            • #7
              I used to do this and doctor recommended getting wrist splints to sleep in.

              It fixed my problems. I have Carpal Tunnel Syndrome in both. When I sleep in weird positions or I have done alot of arm/hand/wrist work...they will bother me at night.

              I hope you fell better soon. This sure interupts sleep.
              T12-L2; Burst fracture L1: Incomplete walking with AFO's and cane since 1989

              My goal in life is to be as good of a person my dog already thinks I am. ~Author Unknown

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              • #8
                I get similar pains sometimes, and it is definitely positional for me. If I change it will slowly fade away. Mine seems to be a pinched nerve in my shoulder. SO I am guessing a pinched nerve somewhere?
                T7-8 since Feb 2005

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                • #9
                  I went in for my second EMG Last month and i was told that i need to have carpal tunnel surgery and maybe surgery down the road on my ulner nerve. That surgery would be located in my right elbo.

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by offroaderswife View Post
                    Hello Friends. I'm having pain in my arms and hands at night. It feels like they are "asleep" with sharp pains..if that makes any sense at all. It usually only happens when I'm laying down. I wake up from the tingling pain and hold them in the air to help ease whatever it is that is happening. Any ideas or suggestions? I am T-10 complete for over 17 years.
                    My wife, an AB, had the exact same symptoms. She would get up and walk around the house a few minutes and then go back to bed. Surgery on both hands, CTS, and she's had no problems at all since.

                    Good luck.
                    Millard
                    ''Life's tough... it's even tougher if you're stupid!'' -- John Wayne

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                    • #11
                      Are these pains serious? Like I should get them checked out and consider surgery? Or just inconvienient and I can just deal with them?
                      Emily, C-8 sensory incomplete mom to a 8 year old and a preschooler. TEN! years post.

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                      • #12
                        I would not sign up for surgery. It only happens when I sleep. I take ambien to help me go back to sleep in the night when I wake up to stretch, rub and move them around. Surgery would mean down time.....I can take a lot of pain to avoid down time.
                        DFW TEXAS- T-10 since March 20th, 1994

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by offroaderswife View Post
                          I would not sign up for surgery. It only happens when I sleep. I take ambien to help me go back to sleep in the night when I wake up to stretch, rub and move them around. Surgery would mean down time.....I can take a lot of pain to avoid down time.

                          I would not either. Just the tests for Carpal Tunnel hurt me really bad but others say it didn't bother them. I would not go through that again.

                          If you keep your arms straight during the night, it should help or the splints helped me.

                          I have a tendency to curl my arms at night and if I am stressed about something I will hug a pillow and my hands and forearms wake me up.

                          I feel the same way about surgery.
                          T12-L2; Burst fracture L1: Incomplete walking with AFO's and cane since 1989

                          My goal in life is to be as good of a person my dog already thinks I am. ~Author Unknown

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                          • #14
                            The exact same thing happens to me, offroaderswife. In my case, the cause is most likely bone spurs in my neck and shoulders pressing on nerves - and it's made much worse by mattresses that are too firm and pillows that are too puffy. You might try switching pillow types and heights, if you haven't already done so. When I lie on my side, I also find it helps to support the arm that's on top with a pillow, but very loosely (not hugging the pillow) - as others have said, bending the elbows can really ratchet up the pain level.

                            Another thing I discovered is that a 1.5" diameter strip of memory foam just under my shoulders helps to relieve pressure on the nerves. I don't have much padding on my shoulders due to muscle atrophy, so the nerves that exit the cervical spine are right there at the surface waiting to get crushed - the pad has made an enormous difference as far as comfort is concerned. Maybe your situation is similar.

                            I hope you can find some relief from this, as it gets so bad sometimes that sleep becomes something to dread instead of enjoy.
                            MS with cervical and thoracic cord lesions

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                            • #15
                              With Carpel Tunnel, the Medial nerve is being pinched when it goes through the passageway on the inside of the wrist. Keeping the wrists straight helps to allow the maximum amount of space in this tunnel for the nerve and the flexor tendons which pass through it. One indication that you may have CTS is to feel along each finger. If there is numbness or tingling in the thumb and next three fingers, but not the pinkie (or at least the outside of the pinkie), then this could be CTS. The Ulner nerve goes to the pinkie, not the Medial nerve.

                              When I was diagnosed with CTS in my left wrist, the Dr told me to go to a drugstore and purchase a wrist brace made for this purpose. I think it ran about $25. I wore it for 4 months, day and night, and it helped. You may only need to wear them at night. In my case, I have nerve damage in my spinal cord due to a virus, so I have severe Allodynia in my left wrist and became unable to wear the brace.

                              If you use the braces for a couple months and it doesn't help, then I would ask your Dr about getting a nerve conduction study and EMG. An EMG is a little unpleasant, but it doesn't last very long. The most conservative treatment for CTS is the use of a brace.

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