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Q. I had ulnar nerve relocation surgery. Could that be the reason I am having wrist pain?

Answered by
Dr. Akshay Kumar Saxena
and medically reviewed by iCliniq medical review team.
This is a premium question & answer published on Aug 31, 2015 and last reviewed on: Jan 28, 2019

Hello doctor,

I have been experiencing pain in my left wrist for a month now. I had x-rays and a CT scan showing normal, but the pain continues. A few years back, I had ulnar nerve relocation surgery from a fall on ice in the same arm. Could the nerve be the reason I am having this wrist issue?

Dr. Akshay Kumar Saxena

Orthopedics And Traumatology Spine Surgery


Welcome to

You have mentioned pain in your wrist region for a month now. Also, you have mentioned previous ulnar nerve transposition surgery.

Since your pain is localized to your wrist region, it seems unlikely that your ulnar nerve is involved because neuropathic pain is usually a radiating kind of pain in the distribution of the nerve. Also, there may be symptoms like numbness, paresthesias (abnormal electrical shock-like sensations) and weakness, which you have not mentioned.

Also, no abnormalities in x-ray and CT scan means that the bones and joint alignment is all right and not a cause of pain. This also means that there is a soft tissue affection which is leading to your symptoms, so it could be due to ligaments around the wrist region, inflammation of tendons which we call as tendinitis, ganglion, etc., besides many others.

The Probable causes:

Tendinitis or ligament sprain.

Investigations to be done:

MRI wrist (If no improvement in 3 weeks time or earlier if any worsening is present).

Treatment plan:

1) To wear a wrist brace for a period of 2-3 weeks.
2) Ice packs for local application.
3) Gentle anti-inflammatory medication like Ibuprofen or Paracetamol can be taken whichever suits your body.
4) Physical therapy

Regarding follow up:

We shall wait for 2-3 weeks to see the effect of this treatment protocol, also if you develop any swelling, or any other inflammation, kindly get back to an orthopedician and traumatologist online.

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