Read below about weakness in one hand, including causes and common questions. Or get a personalized analysis of your weakness in one hand from our A.I. health assistant. At Buoy, we build tools that help you know what’s wrong right now and how to get the right care.

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4 Potential Weakness in One Hand Causes

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.

  1. 1.Carpal Tunnel Syndrome

    The carpal tunnel is a narrow passageway filled with ligament and bones at the base of your hand. It contains nerve and tendons. Sometimes, thickening from irritated tendons or other swelling narrows the tunnel and causes the nerve to be compressed. Symptoms usually start gradually, and as they worsen, grasping objects can become difficult.

    Recovery time varies depending on treatment.

    Rarity:
    Common
    Top Symptoms:
    spontaneous shoulder pain, hand weakness, wrist pain, weakness in one hand, pain in both hands
    Urgency:
    Primary care doctor
  2. 2.Ulnar Nerve Entrapment of Elbow

    Ulnar Nerve Entrapment of Elbow is the compression of the ulnar nerve, causing numbness and/or weakness in the hands.

    Mild symptoms resolve on their own, severe disease resolves with surgery

    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

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  3. 3.Tennis Elbow (Lateral Epicondylitis)

    Lateral epicondylitis (tennis elbow) is soreness or pain on the outside of the upper arm near the elbow.

    2-3 weeks and up to 12 months

    Rarity:
    Common
    Top Symptoms:
    elbow pain, pain in one elbow, hand weakness, pain in the thumb side of the elbow, elbow pain from overuse
    Symptoms that always occur with tennis elbow (lateral epicondylitis):
    elbow pain
    Urgency:
    Self-treatment
  4. 4.De Quervain's Tenosynovitis

    De Quervain's tenosynovitis is a painful condition affecting the tendons on the thumb side of the wrist. If you have de Quervain's tenosynovitis, you will feel pain upon turning your wrist, grasping anything, or making a fist.

    4-6 weeks with treatment

    Rarity:
    Uncommon
    Top Symptoms:
    hand numbness, thumb pain, hand weakness, weakness in one hand, numbness in one hand
    Symptoms that always occur with de quervain's tenosynovitis:
    thumb pain
    Urgency:
    Primary care doctor

Questions Your Doctor May Ask About Weakness in One Hand

  • Q.What is your body mass?
  • Q.Have someone feel for your pulse (at the wrist) on the side of your body that hurts. Now, turn your head to that side. Does the pulse go away? (This is known as the Adson's test.)
  • Q.Turn your head toward the side of your body that is hurting. Lift your head up as someone else pushes down on your head. Does this cause greater pain in your upper body? (This is known as Spurling's test.)
  • Q.About your [wrist], do you notice:

If you've answered yes to one or more of these questions, try our weakness in one hand symptom checker to find out more.

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Weakness in One Hand Symptom Checker Statistics

  • People who have experienced weakness in one hand have also experienced:

    • 7% Pain in One Shoulder
    • 5% Hand Tingling
    • 4% Pain in One Arm
  • People who have experienced weakness in one hand had symptoms persist for:

    • 36% Over a Month
    • 24% Less Than a Day
    • 20% Less Than a Week
  • People who have experienced weakness in one hand were most often matched with:

    • 53% Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
    • 39% Ulnar Nerve Entrapment of Elbow
    • 6% Tennis Elbow (Lateral Epicondylitis)
  • Source: Aggregated and anonymized results from visits to the Buoy AI health assistant (check it out by clicking on “Take Quiz”).

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