Ulnar nerve injury--Excercises?

Can anyone recommend excercises for an injured left ulnar nerve? I must have injured it sleeping, and it has taken almost 12 hrs to get back some function. Thanks for any tips!


phew's picture

daninaa: Several of us have had this problem in the past and what you can do to get rid of this problem depends upon how you use your arm during the day. If you knit for a long time period you might follow the advice of a guy on this site who recommends that you only knit about 20 minutes at a time and give your arm a rest for quite some time after. You might also check out the internet for exercises you might do to help ease the pain as I found that most helpful.
I tried to solve my problem with Physical Therapy which helped a bit but finally had to have a cortisone shot in the arm. It helped a great deal but I still do not knit more that 20 minutes at a time which is one reason it takes me so long to complete a project. But better to get the thing done with the arm at ease rather than in pain. I am sure there are other guys on here that might be able to help you as they did me. Good luck, let us know how things go. John

rmbm612's picture

I have had issues with ulnar nerve compression. Do you knit in an armed chair or sitting next to a table, resting an arm on that table? I was and was resting my right arm on the arm of the chair. My favorite place to knit is in the kitchen at the table and I tended to rest my right arm on the table. If I knitting thing with lots of knit stitches I'll switch forth and back, picking for a bit then throwing. If I don't switch frequently, I'll have symptoms of ulnar nerve compression in both arms. If you have tingling or numbness in your little and ring fingers, that a classic indication of ulnar nerve compression. The numbness will go away, but will return if the cause of compression returns. Try avoiding armed chairs, sofas, or tables when you knit. And, periodically change positions and rest your elbows. I hope this will help. I once awoke at night with numb ring and little fingers thinking I was having heart issues. I'm an OR nurse and had to remind myself that ulnar nerve compression is specific, heart issues aren't. I'd spent the day knitting with a friend at a table and was resting my elbows on the table for several hours. As I'm typing this on my laptop at the kitchen table, resting my right elbow on the table, my little and ring fingers are numb..I should follow my own advice! Good luck.

New York Built's picture

Thank you Daniel, for bringing this subject up...my handwork has suffered from the pain in my two fingers...and I was told I have mild neuropathy, been treated for same, and the pain continues.

I await further suggestions to bring up with my medical "team." Meanwhile, I am off to physical therapy with a new way of looking at this ongoing issue.


Every person I encounter teaches me more about myself. Without whom not.

Thanks everyone for your advice! I injured my nerve lying in bed on my left side, not by knitting. I still don't know why I didn't feel any warning signs. I'm happy to report that approximately 80hrs after injury, I've got my motor function back 100%: I can hold a cup and type; maybe I'll try to knit soon. I finally (!) have developed some sensory symptoms: tingling and pain, right where it's supposed to be. I think that's a good sign because it means more of my nerve is functioning. By the way, I never support my arms on a table or chair-arm when knitting. I don't know what's advisable from an ergonomic view, but I suppose someone does know. It's interesting to learn that everything they teach in books about the ulnar nerve appears to be true, but it's too bad I've become a guinea pig.