pins and needles - pinched nerve?
Before I give details or get told to go to the docter, I have made a doctors appointment for later today already, but I am curious to know if anyone has experienced the same thing. I did a really long 10k pool swim last week sat, double my longest previous distance. I had no real pain after the swim and my shoulders were pretty good. Even until today, a week later, there is no pain, just general stiffness.
BUT, since the swim, if I tilt my neck forward then I get pins and needles around my neck area and down my arms to my hands. Only lasts a couple of seconds and there is no pain at all. Just the strange feeling. I can’t recall hurting myself in the last week either so I am thinking it may have been the swimming. I’ve been told by a biokinetist that it’s probably a pinched nerve some were. My shoulder muscles are very stiff at the moment and could do with a massage. But has anyone ever had the same feeling or experienced the same thing perhaps
I experience a similar sensation while I swim. It starts with pins and needles in my left index finger, this eventually spreads to my thumb and then over time my whole hand. On a 5km swim this past summer the pins and needles got so intense that by the time I got out of the water it felt like my whole hand was on fire. Even at it's worst the pain/sensation goes away within two minutes of stopping swimming. I too have been told it could be a nerve impingement in my shoulder, (Median Nerve). In the past few months I have noticed that the symptoms come on earlier into my swims that before. I used to be able to do about 1500m before any pins and needles but just lately symptoms begin after less than 1km. I spoke to my Dr about it earlier this year and he refereed me to a specialist who I am yet to see.
I had something similar, but accompanied by a lot of pain that stopped me swimming fro a couple of months. A prolapsed disk between C5 and C6 (the vertebrae in my neck) was diagnosed and confirmed with an MRI. This caused a narrowing of the exit point for the nerve that runs down my left arm. Luckily, through rest, massage and rehabilitation exercises the pain and tingling has now gone and I'm back swimming again. It's quite likely the cause was as much related to poor posture and too much computer work as swimming. As an aside, my GP had little interest and it took a lot of effort to get a referral for the MRI and physiotherapy.
It's most likely thoracic outlet syndrome. I've been dealing with it for several years now. For many it's a stroke flaw that leads to pinched nerves and vessels (crossing the midline, etc) for others it's anatomy (extra rib or non canonical placement of the cervical rib). I'd get someone to look closely at your stroke and then make an appointment. The doc will look at hand strength, range of motion and may send you for nerve conduction tests.
Also, remember we only swim 1-2 hrs per day where overhead activities affect the thoracic outlet. Meaning other parts of your life are likely a culprit too. Sleeping with arms under pillow, poor posture, lots of typing under non ideal positions, etc. good luck.
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