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Old 05-15-2019, 10:17 PM   #1
Forum Member
Join Date: Jan 2002
Location: Bakersfield, CA
Posts: 96
Default Piping after ulnar nerve trouble

I'm still a raw beginner after 12 years with maybe five tunes memorized. Yeah, I should be practicing more often... Anyhow, a few months ago I was typing on my computer when I felt a jolt go from my right elbow to my pinky and ring fingers -- I hit my right ulnar nerve. So I went to bed. Unfortunately when I awoke, the two fingers were still numb and I had trouble locating keys on the far right of the keyboard and my fingerwork on the bottom two holes became sloppier than ever.

I'm going in for surgery on my right elbow tomorrow to relieve the compression on that nerve and move it somewhere else so it won't get compressed again. Please wish me luck.

Has anyone here had a similar nerve injury? I'm apprehensive that even after this surgery, my right hand will still be impaired such that I won't get good enough to warrant getting a GHB when I have the spare cash. Right now I have a Dunbar practice chanter and a three-droned Walsh Shuttle Pipe I bought secondhand from someone here around 10 years ago.
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Old 05-16-2019, 09:25 AM   #2
Forum Member - Shy or Quiet
Join Date: Dec 2014
Location: Arizona
Posts: 28
Default Re: Piping after ulnar nerve trouble

I suffered a similar problem 5 years ago. I had surgery that decompressed the nerve, but did not relocate the nerve itself. By the time I opted for surgery the nerve had started to recover so I'm not sure the surgery helped. I still experience some intermittent numbness in my pinkie if I put pressure on my elbow. The nerve has not recovered completely, but I have almost full function. Birls continue to be a problem and my pinkie does stiffen up frequently. Not sure this is a nerve problem or arthritis (which I have in other parts of my hand). Good luck. Keep exercising your fingers. I had some atrophy of the related muscles until I began focusing on using them again. I exercised with rubber bands to strengthen the pinkie.
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Old 05-16-2019, 02:26 PM   #3
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Join Date: May 2018
Location: USA
Posts: 52
Default Re: Piping after ulnar nerve trouble

If it's not too late, ask the surgeon to dislocate a small bicep muscle bundle from the elbow, and wrap the nerve around it, after which reattaching the muscle bundle.

Several years ago, I rode my bicycle across the US, and with only a few hundred miles left, felt my hands go numb. In my case, it was thumb and forefinger (which identified the radial nerve). I couldn't push a fork through a piece of lettuce because I'd lost so much muscle in my thumb! The fork would simply slide through my fingers!

After the aforementioned surgery, my hands are back to 100%. And it can't happen again because the nerve isn't anywhere near the elbow joint.
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