What causes a radial nerve palsy?

Wrist drop. Radial nerve can be compressed against the upper arm bone (the humerus), e.g. By falling sleep with arm hanging over a chair (saturday night palsy!) or by crutches in the armpit or by traction in the operating theater etc and cause wrist drop. An EMG can diagnose the site.

Related Questions

Tell me about radial nerve palsy?

Nerve compression. Causes weakness of wrist and finger extension, and numbness to dorsum of the hand. Can advance to wrist drop. Possible level of compression in proximal forearm, mid humerus, and cervical nerve roots. Seek care with upper extremity surgeon and/or neurologist.

What are symptoms of radial nerve palsy?

Wrist drop. Radial nerve can be compressed against the upper arm bone (the humerus), e.g. By falling sleep with arm hanging over a chair (saturday night palsy!) or by crutches in the armpit or by traction in the operating theater etc and cause wrist drop. An EMG can diagnose the site.

Is radial nerve palsy considered disabled?

Yes. Radial nerve palsy is disabling as it prevents you from extending your wrist and fingers due to lose of nerve supply to the muscles in the forearm responsible for extension.

How bad is a traveling tinel sign with radial nerve palsy?

Tinels sign. Is an exam finding. Often used to follow nerve recovery. An "advancing" tinels sign means it is moving further along the nerve and can indicate healing nerve tissue Tinels can also be used to localize nerve irritation such as over the median nerve in carpal tunnel. One must be careful as it can be over interpreted and there can be false positives and negatives. It's only one aspect if an exam.
Not so bad. Tinel's sign occurs when the nerve has some degree of re-innervation and peripheral sprouting, (recovery), so could be indicative of improvement.

What are the risks of getting radial nerve palsy?

Pressure on nerve. The radial nerve forms under the arm and travels along the lower part of the elbow to the lower part of the hand. Falling asleep with arm draped over back of bench, excessive leaning on elbow on hard desk surface, and arthritis of elbow or wrist can all lead to radial nerve palsy. Disease in the neck may cause specific nerve deficits but not radial nerve palsy.
Classical. The Saturday nite palsy refers to falling asleep on the arm and compressing the spiral groove over the upper arm. Lead poisoning seems to focus on the radial nerve and diabetics are at higher risk for nerve compression syndromes.

Could I correct an arm size/strength imbalance from radial nerve palsy?

Radial nerve palsy. Which affects the muscles of the arm or forarm cannont be corrected in terms of size of the muscles unless the source of the palsy is corrected. For a chronic situation though, typically tendon transfers are used to improve funciion. These are quite well laid out, tendon transfers, and any hand surgeon can assist in discusing the details.

Is there any way I can correct an arm size/strength imbalance from radial nerve palsy?

Be patient. If your nerve is intact (i.e., was not cut) then very likely you will recover function. It will take 6 months to 2 years to recover maximal function. Don't be concerned about the appearance of your arm. Focus on improving the function of your hand and wrist. A hand surgeon, with a hand therapist, can give you a program to aid in strengthening, improving function and determining your prognosis.
Time/therapy. Complicated nerve injuries may never recover completely or at all. Less complicated ones may take more than a year to do so. With therapy and dedication, it is possible to correct arm size/strength and imbalance from radial nerve palsy. Talk to your upper extremity specialist or neurologist for more information about your exact diagnosis and prognosis.

I have radial nerve palsy what kind of meds should I ask my doctor to give me for the pain?

Nerve pain. For nerve type pain, such as that with a radial nerve palsy, membrane stabilizing medications such as Neurontin (gabapentin) or Lyrica (pregabalin) may help.