Entrapped Ulnar Nerve Treated through a Needle with Less Recovery Time

By Chris Centeno, MD /

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ulnar nerve surgery recovery time

DD is a 51 year old athletic woman with a two year history of neck and arm/hand pain. While she had bulging discs in her neck and had Dr. Schultz perform cervical epidurals to help that issue, she continued with pain in the elbow and into her hand. She was diagnosed with ulnar neuropathy (a bad nerve) at the elbow and was considering an ulnar transposition (where the nerve is moved from it’s normal spot in the ulnar groove to another spot). The issue with that surgery is it’s very invasive and can result in a damaged ulnar nerve. In addition, the ulnar nerve surgery recovery time can be significant. Instead of this invasive surgery, she we performed an injection based nerve hydro-dissection, where the entrapped nerve is treated by dissecting away the scar tissue with fluid (in this case the growth factors from her own blood platelets). The recovery time was minimal, as it was all done under ultrasound guidance through a needle. Here is her report after the ulnar nerve procedure:

“Just wanted to let you know that I think the 2nd go round of hydro nerve dissection on my right ulnar nerve at wrist and elbow really did the trick. You treated me initially at end of Dec (R side), early Feb (L side) and then March 8th (R side). Since that last tx  the incidence of numbness in my pinky and ring fingers is gone, and even on the rare occasion I forget and flex the elbows completely in, the numbness, if it occurs, is not nearly as profound, especailly on the right. If I find myself working in Colorado in the future I may have you do a 2nd tx on the left too.

I am very greatful to Dr Schultz as well (didn’t have his email). I believe my neck has improved quite a bit due to his treatments. Thank you both.  The interruption in sleep my symptoms caused is something I don’t miss. Your skills and attitudes are greatly appreciated!  You rock!”

It’s always good to “rock”!

NOTE:  An Injection Based Nerve Hydrosection is a medical procedure and like all medical procedures has a success and failure rate.  Not all patients experience the same results.

Chris Centeno, MD

Regenexx Founder

Chris Centeno, MD is a specialist in regenerative medicine and the new field of Interventional Orthopedics. Centeno pioneered orthopedic stem cell procedures in 2005 and is responsible for a large amount of the published research on stem cell use for orthopedic applications.
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