Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Numbness in left hand fingers



Among the two problems that I blogged about a few days back, one of them has been addressed, temporarily at least, by the hyaluronic acid injection I was given a week back. The other problem remains.

The trouble is it does not let me sleep well on my non-dialysis days. Last night, I did not dialyze and this morning I woke up finally at 4 am after having a restless one hour. And here I am blogging at 5 am in the morning after having some Darjeeling tea. My doctor has suggested that I try an ointment for symptomatic relief. Honestly, I don't like the sound of that. Basically it means that there is no permanent solution for this.

For some time, I was like a ball in a tennis match, being thrown from one court to the other court, the neurologist and the vascular surgeon playing the match - "Not a neuro problem", "Not a vascular problem"! Multiple investigations yielded no clue.

When I did not have this problem, I used to sleep till 7 - 7:30 after my non-dialysis nights. That used to feel so good because I could not sleep beyond 5 am on dialysis nights. Now I sleep well till around 5 am on dialysis nights and on non-dialysis nights, I toss and turn, sit up to relieve the numbness and then try to go back to sleep again. After a point I just give up. My watch shows 3 am or 4 am on most such nights.

I have stopped traveling completely due to these two problems. The knee pain was especially debilitating. After I have taken the injection, I am still on the NSAIDs and the doctor said he will withdraw them after a month. I have been given a timeframe of 2 months to a year by different doctors on how long the effect of the injection will last. Sometimes I think, once the pain goes completely (my knee still hurts towards early evening these days), I should travel a bit but due to the hand numbness I am quite wary of traveling. Nights would be quite disturbing since I would not be dialysing at night.

On long term dialysis, it is these additional problems that bother you more than the kidney failure itself. I honestly, don't mind the dialysis these days. I just wish it was the only thing I had to deal with.

5 comments:

Pin said...

Hello Kamal, that must be frustrating. I hope your doctors find out what's really with your hands.
I remember I had a patient before, complaining of numbness on the hand with the fistula. It was steal syndrome. She was clueless for a while what was causing it, but when she stopped hanging out with her friend who smokes, her symptoms were relieved. Hope this helps a bit, I've read in your previous post though that your case isn't steal syndrome.

Ambarish said...

Hi Kamal, just came across your blog today - ask your doctors if your hand numbness/pain is carpal tunnel syndrome

Kamal Shah said...

Ok, will check. Thanks for the tip.

Kamal Shah said...

I just realised that if it was Carpal Tunnel syndrome, it would have shown in the Nerve Conduction Study that was done.

Turns out that it is Steal Syndrome! I am now scheduled to undergo a surgery in the first week of June where a vein would be taken from my lower thigh and put in my left arm where it would bypass the fistula and supply blood to the hand.

Kamal Shah said...

Dear Dr. Ambarish, it turns out that this is Carpal Tunnel Syndrome!

I was referred to another neurologist and they did the Nerve Conduction Test again and it showed Carpal Tunnel Syndrome. Getting operated for this on Thursday.

Thanks!