Ulnar Neuropathy

Ulnar Neuropathy is a disorder that involves the ulnar nerve (one of the major nerves in the arm).  Ulnar neuropathy is usually due to entrapment in the elbow area, the region of the “funny bone”.  This entrapment may be spontaneous and related to thickening of adjacent ligaments and muscles. This can be related to a prior injury in the area with associated scar formation that leads to a delayed onset of the nerve compression often years after the injury “tardy ulnar palsy”.


The symptoms of Ulnar Neuropathy include:

  • Painless, numbness in the ulnar side of the forearm, hand, 5th finger and the lateral half of the 4th finger
  • Weakness of the affected hand
  • The weakness effects most of the muscles in the hand except for the thumb and can be very disabling especially with fine motor skills


In order to diagnose Ulnar Neuropathy, you will need to be seen for a clinical exam, during this exam a qualified neurologist will confirm the condition by electro diagnostic testing and by reviewing your medical history.


For mild cases, a patient may try elbow splinting and neuropathic medications.  However, for more significant cases, surgery may be required for those who have neurological deficits.


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