A ganglion cyst at the elbow causing superficial radial nerve compression: a case report

John McFarlane, Ravi Trehan, Miguel Olivera, Carl Jones, Simon Blease, Paul Davey
Journal of Medical Case Reports 2008, 2: 122

INTRODUCTION: We report a rare case of a ganglion cyst at the elbow causing neurological symptoms by stretching the superficial radial nerve alone. Ganglia associated with radial nerve palsy at the elbow have been reported previously involving the deep branch of the posterior interosseous nerve and the superficial radial nerve, but not the superficial radial nerve alone.

CASE PRESENTATION: A 45-year-old woman presented with a 4-month history of a painful lump in the anterior aspect of her left elbow associated with altered sensation in the dorsoradial aspect of her left hand. There was no history of trauma or any exacerbating factors. On examination the altered sensation was in the superficial radial nerve distribution and she had a positive Tinel's sign over the site of the swelling which was located over the anterior aspect of the radiocapitellar joint.

CONCLUSION: The unique clinical symptoms and signs of our diagnosis of superficial radial nerve compression were confirmed by magnetic resonance imaging and then operative findings.

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