Nerve damage from failed cannulation?

Posted , 6 users are following.

hi all, 

I had a gastroscopy last teusday and had sedation for it which required a cannula. the nurse that fitted the cannula tried to fit it to my wrist first, but missed the vein. this sent a huge pain down through my hand into my index finger, like an electric shock. when she withdrew the needle that pain died down and left a burning tingle. I assumed based on my experience with wrist needles (arterial blood gas) that the wrist is just a painful place and that it would be ok. she then put the cannula in my elbow. 

when I left the hospital five hours or so later, the burning tingle was still present, but my husband and I assumed it was just bruised from the injection and that it would pass. It has been just over a week now and the pain is worse. when ever I move my wrist or touch the area, the electric shock pain shoot back through my hand. my index finger and thumb are constantly burning and tingling. Its gotten to the point that I am afraid to use my hand because of the pain. It even wakes me up at night. 

I having trouble getting a GP appointment but I cant carry on like this.  What could have happened? has the failed cannulation damaged something? I didnt even know that was possible. 

On top of all the other problems I have this is just too much. 

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5 Replies

  • Posted

    Hi Tillydog

    I can't answer your question but just want to send my good wishes. Definitely try and see your GP or go to an NHS drop in centre. Perhaps it caught a nerve?


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  • Posted

    The radial nerve was touched...that was the electrical shock.

    Moist heat sould help bring the inflammation down. Wet a wash cloth, wring out very well, put in on your wrist, add the electric heating pad.

    It will take time, but it should sorry

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    • Posted

      thank you. I didnt even know this was something that could happen. I thought I was going crazy. Hubby had no idea what I meant. 

      Did I do something wrong or does this just happen sometimes?

      I have been using a moist heat pack (like a wheat bag thing) all day and it does burn and tingle less when its warm. Im going to the doctors on friday as they have a drop in with my usual GP so I know I will be able to see him (hes very good) so hopefully he'll help too. I am so hoping this is a VERY temporary thing. 

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  • Posted

    I am having the same problem with my right hand that you did.  Thumb is numb and electric shock feeling when putting on hand cream or body lotion.  Has your pain gone completely now?  I have complained to the hospital but have heard nothing back yet.
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