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Forum Name: Neurology Topics

Question: Swollen upper L trap w/numbness L arm,palm,ring, 5th fingers


 curiousn - Sun Apr 05, 2009 2:31 pm

I saw a doctor yesterday that thought my troubles stemmed from muscle spasms... The Doctor gave me muscle relaxers and anti-inflammatory meds... I have been taking the meds, but I still have pain in my upper left trapevius muscle and numbness in my left arm, bottom palm, ring finger, and pinky (5th) finger... The Doctor never had my shirt off when see asked me to perform some movements... What I noticed today when I was looking in the mirror at my face...that one side of my trapevius was larger than the other...I took off my shirt to be for sure...and yeah, it is swallon....I asked my mother to take a look at it without saying check out my swallon left trapevius and she to confirmed that the left trapevius is swallon. This is the thing, I haven't done anything to cause this...no injuries to this area...what I noticed first about 4 weeks ago was the tingling numbness that I felt in my left palm and ring & pinky fingers and the lack of strength in my left hand. As time progressed, so did the symptoms...approximately two days ago, when my complete left arm went numb...this is when i called the triage nurse to see what they thought...and of course this is where I was diagnosed with muscle spasms. I don't want to sound like the Doctor didn't do their job...but shouldn't I have taken off my shirt for the physical? Is a swallon Left trapevius muscle and muscle spasm one in the same? Any help would help, Thank you!
 John Kenyon, CNA - Wed Apr 15, 2009 10:14 pm

User avatar Hello --

Something is definitely placing pressure on the ulnar nerve causing the symptoms downstream from the trapezius muscle, and the apparent swelling could be spasm, but also could be due to a number of other things which need to be ruled out by a comprehensive hands-on exam, something you haven't had as yet (and I don't understand how that could have been passed over, but these things do seem to happen). There are enough possible causes of this that it's not worth trying to enumerate them here, but spasm, while possible, is one of the less-likely ones. I'd suggest a neurologist to determine the cause by tracing back from the effect. This should get to the bottom of things since the doctor you saw previously clearly has no interest in working this through and it's just not an acceptable situation as it stands.

I hope this is helpful to you. I'd rather not speculate on what's actually causing the problem, but instead direct you toward the sort of specialist who can most readily determine what's wrong and, if necessary, redirect you to someone who can best treat the underlying problem.

Good luck to you and please keep us updated as to what you find out.

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