Ulnar Tunnel Syndrome
The bone of the upper arm, the humerus, has three main bony points that are significant in repetitive strain injuries. The ones associated with Ulnar Tunnel Syndrome anatomy are the point of the elbow, known as the olecranon, and the medial epicondyle. Both of these bony points are at the elbow end of the humerus. The notch, or space, located between these two bony points is known as the Ulnar Tunnel.
Many of us at one time or another in our lives, have hit our “funny bone”, creating that familiar sharp, zinging pain. You have actually hit the ulnar nerve as it passes through the ulnar tunnel!
It would be a much simpler recovery process if the only source of ulnar nerve dysfunction occurred only at the ulnar tunnel. Unfortunately, as in all nerve-related conditions, the source of problems can occur anywhere along the path of the nerve. But the pain and discomfort is often just felt at the place where the nerve is under the most physical strain. In this case, that is likely to be the ulnar tunnel itself.
The ulnar nerve begins as part of the brachial plexus and branches off to become its own nerve near the front of the shoulder. From there, the nerve passes through the armpit, between a septum that separates the biceps and triceps muscles, then around the medial epicondyle, through the ulnar tunnel, the forearm, the wrist, and on into the hand and outer two fingers. If the nerve is impinged or adhered anywhere along this pathway, symptoms will develop. More often than not, the pain and numbness will seem to originate at the ulnar tunnel, even if that is not the only site of impingement or adhesion.
Of course, it is entirely possible that there will be multiple sites of nerve impingement in Ulnar Tunnel Syndrome, as there often are with other nerve-related conditions. In this case, all of the impingement sites and all the adhesions must be addressed and resolved before significant symptom relief can be experienced.
To learn more about Ulnar Tunnel Syndrome, visit the following sections:
Ulnar Tunnel Syndrome Symptoms
Ulnar Tunnel Syndrome Self Care
If you would like professional coaching through the recovery process for this disorder, read more about my comprehensive Ulnar Tunnel Syndrome Self Care Toolkit. The program a six week plan customized for the unique and often confusing maze of stretches, body awareness changes, ergonomics and other self care tips and techniques I have found to be most helpful when recovering from this distressing condition.
Self Care Toolkit -
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to read about other repetitive strain injuries.