WARNING: This story could freak some readers out, a minor-symptom-turned-out-to-be-cancer story, real nightmare fuel (and not just for hypochondriacs). So I will preface this, loudly and clearly, by saying that I am sharing it because I genuinely think it’s a good “teachable moment,” useful enough to justify the risk.
Physical therapist Michelle Morrow on the tingling in her right hand and forearm:
“My symptoms mimicked cubital tunnel syndrome very well and even had an acute onset after overuse.”
But it was not a common neuropathy. It was a brain tumour. 😬 Yet another case of a “simple” musculoskeletal problem that was the tip of a central/systemic iceberg.
So what’s the teachable moment? Why share a story like this, when it really could make some readers worry excessively about their tingles? The point is to combat the plague of oversimplification in sports/pain medicine, where simplistic “mechanical” diagnoses constantly drown out the messier physiological factors that are often the real story. Very few of those causes are ominous, of course, but it is the scary ones that make the most vivid examples. They remind us to think a little bigger than the traditional bogeymen of musculoskeletal medicine: posture, scar tissue, spasms, spinal alignment and such.