Yesterday while I was doing weighted dips my right hand went numb...it fell asleep as they say. I continued to finish my workout and most of the numbness went away. But my pinky and ring finger tips were still a little numb several hour later and the next day when I woke up. Now, around 2pm, it's better, but I have some pressure on the outside of my forearm. It sounds like tennis elbow to me(I don't play tennis btw ) What should I do? Continue to workout like regular or should I take a break? Any advice? Thanks.
Geez--first you post in the training section about an injury and then you're looking for a less than 12-hour turnaround for your question?
Numbness is not a part of tennis elbow. Pinky and ring finger tips being numb suggests a problem with the ulnar nerve, which travels around the tip of your elbow along the inside, where your funny bone is. It also runs down along the 'pinky' side of the forearm and into the pinky side of your hand. The fact that you have continued numbness or 'parasthesia' is concerning. Several things are posssible:
1) You may have compressed the ulnar nerve when doing weighted dips as it passes around the hook of the hamate (in the lower pinky side quadrant of your palm), in which case, you should not continue to do weighted dips with your body weight on that part of your hand/wrist to avoid further injury. This injury could have been to sensory or motor nerves--but you don't describe weakness, so I dunno if it's one or the other or both. The only treatment for nerve injury is rest. This seems to be the most likely mechanism of injury.
2)The nerve injury could be higher up than your wrist. Your description of pressure on the outside of your forearm suggests that there might be swelling in that area for whatever reason, which could be causing a compression of the ulnar nerve (i.e. compartment syndrome). Have you increased your training volume or intensity dramatically lately? Have you injured your arm, elbow or shoulder? Do you notice any swelling on your right side compared to your left side? Compartment syndromes are tricky to self-diagnose and depending on their severity not possible to self-treat. Acute, severe compartment syndrome requires surgical intervention--but given that your right forearm muscles haven't died (it takes about 6 hours), they sound like they might be vascularly okay. There's a bunch of things a doctor would do to check your circulation--radial pulse, ulnar pulse, Allen test, but unless you know how to do those, I can't really help you. If you get intense pain in your forearm, get to an emergency department.
3) The injury could be even higher up than your forearm and into the shoulder where the ulnar nerve comes off the brachial plexus. Not sure how you would do that, or how it would happen, but any good sport doctor would not rule it out completely. It's pretty low on my list though. If you have a friend who knows how to check the biceps, brachioradialis and triceps reflex, that would be a good start in ruling out nerve root damage (again, not sure how you might do that, and it's low on the list, but should be ruled out).
Then again, I could be just paranoid from seeing catastrophic consequences of MSK injuries in lecture yesterday.
Byran...Thanks for your response. BTW, I posted in the training section cus it happened while training and effects my training.
I don't notice any swelling and I have increased my volume a little latlet as I have added dropsets in additon to my worksets. If it gets worse I'll see a doc....I'll see how it goes in the gym tommorow. Cross your fingers everyone.
I think I found the cause of my problem. I recently started adding "planks" into my ab rotuine. I support all my body weight on the area were my forearm pain is starting. I think this probably aggravated something there. I worked out today and it didn't hurt too bad or effect my workout, but I did feel some slight discomfort.