Arm Numbness
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Reviewed By:

Benjamin Kummer, MD

Benjamin Kummer, MD (Neurology)

Dr Kummer is Assistant Professor of Neurology at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai (ISMMS), with joint appointment in Digital and Technology Partners (DTP) at the Mount Sinai Health System (MSHS) as Director of Clinical Informatics in Neurology. As a triple-board certified practicing stroke neurologist and informaticist, he has successfully improved clinical operations at the point of care by acting as a central liaison between clinical neurology faculty and DTP teams to implement targeted EHR configuration changes and workflows, as well as providing subject matter expertise on health information technology projects across MSHS. | Dr Kummer also has several years’ experience building and implementing several informatics tools, presenting scientific posters, and generating a body of peer-reviewed work in “clinical neuro-informatics” – i.e., the intersection of clinical neurology, digital health, and informatics – much of which is centered on digital/tele-health, artificial intelligence, and machine learning. He has spearheaded the Clinical Neuro-Informatics Center in the Department of Neurology at ISMMS, a new research institute that seeks to establish the field of clinical neuro-informatics and disseminate knowledge to the neurological community on the effects and benefits of clinical informatics tools at the point of care.

Shohei Harase, MD

Shohei Harase, MD (Neurology)

Dr. Harase spent his junior and senior high school years in Finland and the U.S. After graduating from the University of Washington (Bachelor of Science, Molecular and Cellular Biology), he worked for Apple Japan Inc. before entering the University of the Ryukyus School of Medicine. He completed his residency at Okinawa Prefectural Chubu Hospital, where he received the Best Resident Award in 2016 and 2017. In 2021, he joined the Department of Cerebrovascular Medicine at the National Cerebral and Cardiovascular Center, specializing in hyperacute stroke.

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Content updated on Apr 4, 2024

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People with similar symptoms also use Ubie's symptom checker to find possible causes

  • I have numbness in my right arm

  • Pins and needles after sleeping in an awkward position

  • I have numbness in my left arm

  • Numbness in the hands if I turn to look left or right

  • Numbness from shoulder to elbow

  • Pinched nerve in the elbow

  • Numbness in the right arm

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About the Symptom

Arm numbness is best described as a loss of sensation or feeling in the arm anywhere between the shoulder and the hand. It can sometimes be described as a "tingling" or "pins and needles" sensation.

When to see a doctor

Seek professional care if you experience any of the following symptoms

  • Numb arm

Possible Causes

Generally, Arm numbness can be related to:

  • Cervical Spondylosis

    A condition in which the neck bones (cervical spine) become damaged due to wear and tear. Risk factors include long periods of desk work and driving, previous neck injuries, and aging.

  • Multiple Sclerosis (MS)

    Multiple sclerosis (MS) disease in which the immune system attacks parts of the brain and spinal cord. The direct cause of MS remains unknown, but certain risk factors have been identified such as low vitamin D levels, tobacco smoking, exposure to UV radiation, childhood obesity, and infection with the virus that causes mononucleosis. The disease tends to affect young people more commonly as well as people living in higher latitudes. MS typically occurs in "attacks" which can include but are not limited to painful eye movements, blurry vision in one eye, numbness or weakness in hands or feet on one side, or double vision.

  • Thoracic Outlet Syndrome

    Compression of nerves and/or blood vessels at the base of the neck, causing symptoms like arm numbness. Symptoms worsen or occur when arms are raised, as this action increases pressure in the base of the neck. Causes include tumors, increased muscle or fat in the region, and abnormal ribs at the top of the ribcage.

  • Chronic Inflammatory Demyelinating Polyneuropathy
  • Neuropathic Pain
  • Syringomyelia
  • Spinal Cord Intramedullary Tumor
  • Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA)
  • Ossification of the Posterior Longitudinal Ligament (OPLL)

Related serious diseases

Sometimes, Arm numbness may be related to these serious diseases:

  • Cerebral Infarction

    Cerebral infarction refers to damage to brain tissue resulting from a stroke. It occurs due to decreased blood supply and oxygen delivery to the brain, causing brain cell death and brain damage. It is typically caused by a blood clot or fatty/cholesterol plaques blocking a blood vessel to the brain, but can also occur if a blood vessel ruptures and bleeds into the brain.

Doctor's Diagnostic Questions

Your doctor may ask these questions to check for this symptom:

  • Are your arms numb?

  • Do you have numbness in your arm?

  • Do you have numbness from shoulder to elbow?

  • Did you compress your nerve(s) by sleeping in a specific position?

  • Do you have neck numbness when bending?

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Find Similar Symptoms

Symptoms from similar body parts

Reviewed By:

Benjamin Kummer, MD

Benjamin Kummer, MD (Neurology)

Dr Kummer is Assistant Professor of Neurology at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai (ISMMS), with joint appointment in Digital and Technology Partners (DTP) at the Mount Sinai Health System (MSHS) as Director of Clinical Informatics in Neurology. As a triple-board certified practicing stroke neurologist and informaticist, he has successfully improved clinical operations at the point of care by acting as a central liaison between clinical neurology faculty and DTP teams to implement targeted EHR configuration changes and workflows, as well as providing subject matter expertise on health information technology projects across MSHS. | Dr Kummer also has several years’ experience building and implementing several informatics tools, presenting scientific posters, and generating a body of peer-reviewed work in “clinical neuro-informatics” – i.e., the intersection of clinical neurology, digital health, and informatics – much of which is centered on digital/tele-health, artificial intelligence, and machine learning. He has spearheaded the Clinical Neuro-Informatics Center in the Department of Neurology at ISMMS, a new research institute that seeks to establish the field of clinical neuro-informatics and disseminate knowledge to the neurological community on the effects and benefits of clinical informatics tools at the point of care.

Shohei Harase, MD

Shohei Harase, MD (Neurology)

Dr. Harase spent his junior and senior high school years in Finland and the U.S. After graduating from the University of Washington (Bachelor of Science, Molecular and Cellular Biology), he worked for Apple Japan Inc. before entering the University of the Ryukyus School of Medicine. He completed his residency at Okinawa Prefectural Chubu Hospital, where he received the Best Resident Award in 2016 and 2017. In 2021, he joined the Department of Cerebrovascular Medicine at the National Cerebral and Cardiovascular Center, specializing in hyperacute stroke.

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