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middle finger cramp ?? c7 nerve root

Kris-NYKKris-NY Posts: 2,207
edited 06/11/2012 - 7:46 AM in Neck Pain: Cervical
Hi Guys

Something new started this week. I was on the phone one night and my middle finger and up my arm suddenly cramped or spasmed. It felt something like a charlie horse cramp but I don't know if cramp is the right term. It might have been a spasm or a loss of feeling. There was some pain which seemed to be focused on my finger and elbow.

I thought it was a one time thing until it happened again last night. I was sitting at a table reading a book. The only thing I can relate between the two episodes is that I had my arm slightly bent and resting on the arm of the chair and then the table. This morning I felt some tightness in my hand but not the spasm-like feeling. The two episodes were very scary. It was a very intense feeling of almost paralysis that scared the wits out of me.

Looking at the dermatone map it is the c7 nerve root that goes to the middle finger. And I do have c7-8 facet issues.

I'm wondering if anyone else has had this happen? How do you describe it? And what did it relate to?

Thanks guys. I know I have to call the neurologist on Monday but I was hoping to get some insight first.


  • Howdy Kris,

    I have nerve issues from C5-8 and as such I get tight cramping constantly with my fingers and thumb. What's funny is my fingers do their thing most times in pairs! The pinkie and ring, the middle and index, and the thumb by its self. Occasionally my middle finger will cramp on its own, or the index. The ring and pinkie, always together. I can't speak to facet issues as mine are exit nerves.

    When my middle finger is 'going solo' on its cramping, I also have burning along the top of my forearm (the outer half), to the back side of my elbow and then up halfway between my biceps and triceps (forgot what that muscle is). If it cramps hard or a lot in a given day, I start getting an arthritis type pain along the bone from above the middle finger to my wrist. I don't know if that is of help or not, but mine is from my cervical issues. Please let us know what you find out. *HUGZ*


    PCTF C4 - T2, Laminectomies C5, C6 & C7. Severe Palsy left arm/hand.
  • Hi, Happy Friday!

    Nice to catch my dear c-spiney / neuro friends!! :)

    Kris, I haven't experienced an isolated symptom of cramping like you describe - - the cramping occurs for me after the horrible nerve spasms down my ulnar and median nerves above elbow down into hand and fingers -- and then the numbness and cramping as the spasms lessen into 2-3 weeks - - then I go into a phase of little to no spasms and only dysfunction / damage of what was done = numbness and stiff no movement of certain fingers.

    I have nerve compression and facet issues from C-6/7/8 and experiencing two major nerve spasms episodes, currently leaving me in order of severity: thumb failure, pinkie failure and arching with curl position outward from ring finger and little movement function, ring, middle and index fingers, those 3 equally weak and numb all the time.

    My c-spine compression and facet arthropathy is bilateral (left and right nerve roots) but more severe on the right = all the neuropathy spasms and damage occuring left arm elbow to wrist and fingers.

    I know it gets worse in episodes; I have a very soft small pillow with cushy fleece supporting my arm and cushion it from my upholstered recliner chair arm which is pretty firm & really irritates my elbow spasms down to hand, also told to keep arm as relaxed, straight and not bent at the elbow.

    Found a book-reading stand for disability aids website, you might want to try -- will get web link.

    Take care and very nice chatting ! :)

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  • Kris,

    The last surgery I had one of the issues was to help that finger, which it did on my right hand. There is a finger flicking test the doctors does to confirm it. The other thing I could no longer do was lift my hands in a upward motion. I always walked around or held them with them bent at the wrist inward. But for myself that level was the c6-c7 level which is the c7 nerve root. The middle finger was not to distressing, but what became of more concern as it progressed I also lost the what they refer to as the web of the hand meaning your pointer finger, thumb and second finger. Sense it was a central herniation it took it out on both hands. There became a point I couldn't find a neutral position to make it stop I leaned left sent shock waves down that arm same way on the right side. So no matter which way I went there was no relief on the symptoms.

    Of course the only way your going to know for real that is indeed coming from your neck is for a doctor to run the appropriate test. My concern always is that once i tell a doctor my condition with myelopathy they they dismiss all issues I have off to my neck when something else is going on. For example I have a peroneal nerve trapped in my leg but it has nothing to do with my spine. But rather more to do with a broken ankle i had in 07. But the doctors for awhile kept dismissing my leg issues off as my myelopathy and not looking for the real source of the issue.

    It is definitely something you want to bring up with whomever is treating your spine issues at the current time and see what they have to say. My guess is that a emg might be in order.
  • jlrfryejjlrfrye ohioPosts: 1,111
    When I had severe stenosis at c6-7 level I had the elbow pain and the the middle finger cramping. The elbow pain felt like a deep ache and the finger would at times get stuck in a bent position for short periods of time. Like the cramp had it stuck. Sorry could not think of any other way to describe it.lol.
    Maybe you should give your Dr. a call.
  • Susan that is exactly what I am feeling. The finger seems to pull in slightly and freeze. I think it freaked me out and I think the pain was intense but that might have been me freaking out. So far it only lasted about a minute each time.

    Now I guess I have to calm myself enough so I can figure out what I am feeling. I am concerned that this might happen when I am driving. I am also concerned that they will happen more frequently and last longer.

    Ugh not another EMG. ANd my neurologist is talking about trying trigger point injections again - another ugh since they did nothing the first time. I'm thinking that a call to the PM doc first might be an idea.
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