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Hey docs! Thank you for this informative site!
Recently my mother experienced excruciating pain and stiffness on her right arm, from her fingers to her biceps. It seemed like a nerve pain, if that makes sense. She went for TCM treatment which helped her alleviate the pain a lot but it still mildly persists and is affecting her performance at work. I have a few concerns about this:
1. Firstly if TCM a good form of medical treatment. I’m worried that it only helps her to alleviate the pain when the root cause of the pain still persists and that it’s actually part of a larger problem.
2. We’re afraid that seeking a GP’s help would be a long and painful journey (cost factor included) trying to figure out the cause of her pain since it’s the first time it has ever happened and seems so mysterious. (Could it be one of those rare auto immune diseases that seems hard to detect?)
Thanks for all the help!
Hi Elisa, thank you for your kind compliment, we are always trying to meet the demands of our community.
Sounds like your mother is having terrible pain going from her biceps to the fingers. “Nerve pain” does exist, and it can be very very debilitating.
- TCM is rather popular in Singapore, acupuncture does have good effects on certain type of pain. And most TCM physicians will certainly refer your mother to see a western doctor if they suspect something dangerous is happening.
- I don’t think cost is a huge consideration nowadays, considering that TCM and non western doctor treatments typically cost more than seeing a GP.
- The GP probably can advice you further on whether your mother needs further examination and probably even tell you how much it might cost, then it is up to you whether you want to go for further checks or try to treat the problem first.
- If the pain is rather persistent and causing a lot of problems, i think there should be something going on. It might be something common like muscle/tendon tears, to nerve issues to spinal nerve compression problems. I think these are pretty common, and delays in treatment tend to cause poor outcomes as the nerve will slowly die as the compression continue.