Symptoms A-Z

Weakness in One Forearm Symptoms, Causes & Common Questions

Understand your weakness in one forearm symptoms, including 5 causes and common questions.

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5 Possible Weakness In One Forearm Causes

The list below shows results from the use of our quiz by Buoy users who experienced weakness in one forearm. This list does not constitute medical advice and may not accurately represent what you have.

Ulnar nerve entrapment of elbow

Ulnar nerve entrapment of elbow is also called cubital tunnel syndrome. The ulnar nerve begins at the spinal cord in the neck and runs down the arm into the hand. This very long nerve can become compressed, or entrapped, by other structures at certain points along the way. Entrapment often happens in the cubital tunnel, which is the narrow passage at the inside of the elbow.

The exact cause for entrapment may not be known. Fluid buildup and swelling inside the elbow; previous elbow fracture or dislocation; or leaning on the elbow for long periods of time can put pressure on the ulnar nerve inside the cubital tunnel.

Symptoms include numbness and tingling of the hand and fingers, sometimes leading to weakness and even muscle wasting in the hand.

Diagnosis is made through physical examination, x-ray, and nerve conduction studies.

Treatment begins with wearing a supportive brace and adjusting activities to avoid further irritating the nerve. Surgery is usually not needed unless the nerve compression is causing weakness and loss of use in the hand.

Rarity: Common

Top Symptoms: hand weakness, weakness in one hand, numbness in one hand, pain in one elbow, pain in one forearm

Urgency: Primary care doctor

Spinal stenosis

The spine, or backbone, protects the spinal cord and allows people to stand and bend. Spinal stenosis causes narrowing in the spine. The narrowing puts pressure on nerves and the spinal cord and can cause pain.

Rarity: Common

Top Symptoms: lower back pain, back pain that shoots down the leg, back pain that shoots to the butt, difficulty walking, thigh pain

Urgency: Primary care doctor

Weakness In One Forearm Symptom Checker

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Herniated (slipped) disk in the upper back

The backbone, or spine, is made up of 26 bones called vertebrae. In between the bones are soft disks filled with a jelly-like substance. These disks cushion the vertebrae and keep them in place. Although people talk about a slipped disk, nothing actually slips out of place. The outer shell of the disk ruptures, and the jelly-like substance bulges out. It may be pressing on a nerve, which is what causes the pain.A slipped disk is more likely to happen due to strain on the back, such as during heavy lifting, and older individuals are at higher risk.

Rarity: Common

Top Symptoms: upper back pain, neck pain, arm weakness, back pain that gets worse when sitting, upper spine pain

Symptoms that always occur with herniated (slipped) disk in the upper back: upper back pain

Urgency: Primary care doctor

Chronic idiopathic peripheral neuropathy

Peripheral neuropathy refers to the feeling of numbness, tingling, and pins-and-needles sensation in the feet. Idiopathic means the cause is not known, and chronic means the condition is ongoing without getting better or worse.

The condition is most often found in people over age 60. Idiopathic neuropathy has no known cause.

Symptoms include uncomfortable numbness and tingling in the feet; difficulty standing or walking due to pain and lack of normal sensitivity; and weakness and cramping in the muscles of the feet and ankles.

Peripheral neuropathy can greatly interfere with quality of life, so a medical provider should be seen in order to treat the symptoms and reduce the discomfort.

Diagnosis is made through physical examination; blood tests to rule out other conditions; and neurologic and muscle studies such as electromyography.

Treatment involves over-the-counter pain relievers; prescription pain relievers to manage more severe pain; physical therapy and safety measures to compensate for loss of sensation in the feet; and therapeutic footwear to help with balance and walking.

Rarity: Rare

Top Symptoms: distal numbness, muscle aches, joint stiffness, numbness on both sides of body, loss of muscle mass

Urgency: Primary care doctor

Repetitive strain injury of the upper arm

Repetitive strain injury of the upper arm is caused by consistent repetitive use.

Rarity: Uncommon

Top Symptoms: upper arm pain from overuse, upper arm weakness, upper arm numbness

Symptoms that always occur with repetitive strain injury of the upper arm: upper arm pain from overuse

Symptoms that never occur with repetitive strain injury of the upper arm: upper arm injury, severe upper arm pain

Urgency: Self-treatment

Questions Your Doctor May Ask About Weakness In One Forearm

To diagnose this condition, your doctor would likely ask the following questions:

  • Do you work with your hands for a lot of the day? (e.g. at a computer, doing manual tasks, etc.)
  • How would you explain your forearm pain?
  • Have you ever been diagnosed with diabetes?
  • Did you just suffer from a high impact injury (e.g., a fall, collision, accident or sports trauma)?

The above questions are also covered by our A.I. Health Assistant.

If you've answered yes to one or more of these questions

Take a quiz to find out what might be causing your weakness in one forearm

Weakness In One Forearm Symptom Checker Statistics

People who have experienced weakness in one forearm have also experienced:

  • 8% Pain In One Shoulder
  • 8% Pain In One Forearm
  • 6% Weakness In One Hand

People who have experienced weakness in one forearm were most often matched with:

  • 33% Ulnar Nerve Entrapment Of Elbow
  • 33% Spinal Stenosis
  • 33% Herniated (Slipped) Disk In The Upper Back

People who have experienced weakness in one forearm had symptoms persist for:

  • 39% Over a month
  • 23% Less than a day
  • 18% Less than a week

Source: Aggregated and anonymized results from visits to the Buoy AI health assistant (check it out by clicking on “Take Quiz”).

Weakness In One Forearm Symptom Checker

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Disclaimer: The article does not replace an evaluation by a physician. Information on this page is provided as an information resource only, and is not to be used or relied on for any diagnostic or treatment purposes.