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Date of last update: 8/19/2017.

Forum Name: Surgery Topics

Question: Muscle hernia in thew forearm.

 domedelay - Fri Jan 23, 2009 12:06 am

Hi, recently I noticed a small soft lump on my forearm. I went and got an ultrasound and they said I had a muscle hernia, which was quite rare. I have never seriously injured my arm, nor have I ever had surgery. The hernia has not caused me any pain, however i do sometimes get a dull ache close to that area, but i think it may be unrelated. I am a 24 years old and male, and have never really had any major health problems. I was just wondering if anyone could tell me what some possible causes of this may be, and does it require treatment and further investigation from professionals even though there is no discomfort?

 John Kenyon, CNA - Mon Mar 09, 2009 8:49 pm

User avatar Hello --

Herniation of muscles of the upper extremities is very rare, but common enough to be easily found in the literature. It seems the primary causes for surgery are cosmetic and to relieve discomfort (in that order). While I've found no causes other than trauma/overuse of the muscle group, I would imagine people with some form of connective tissue disease might be more prone to this sort of thing than would others, and of course there's always the possibility of a congenital weakness in the spot for no particular reason. If you're without symptoms and the bulge doesn't bother you or others then it probably requires no further attention until and unless it begins to cause problems.

Hope this is helpful. Good luck to you.
 domedelay - Mon Mar 09, 2009 9:26 pm

Hi thanks for the reply! I had a read about different connective tissue disease and how it may be related to the immune system. This now has me a little worried as I had shingles about two years ago, which is caused by the immune system being under stress and is somewhat rare for younger people. I was also told by an eye specialist that my eyes are stuck in an immune response cycle which causes them to release gunk in order to clean the eyes, although they are clean. Could these two issues be related to the hernia somehow and will a simple blood test show any connective tissue diseases?
 John Kenyon, CNA - Thu Mar 12, 2009 11:00 am

User avatar While shingles is a virally-caused problem that is a sequel to chickenpox (which a person may not even know he's had in the distant past if it were mild enough), there is still a possibility, however remote, that connective tissue disease due to some form of autoimmune disorder, might be related to herniation of the muscle. This can happen with certain CTDs, but there are so many different types I wouldn't dare start throwing around possible types. There are tests for this, first ANA blood testing to see if there are any abnormally present antibodies, and then more specialized tests if that comes out abnormal. It wouldn't hurt to have this done, just to be on the safe side. This way, if you do find you are one of those who carry a heritable CTD/autoimmune defect, at least you can know better what to expect in the future and how to avoid certain injuries, etc. Definitely worth a trip to the doctor for that, yes.

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