Hello everyone… long time reader, first time poster… I need some advice.
I have been receiving acupuncture with great success over the past 10 years with an acupuncturist in the United States from China who still goes back to China several times a year and practices there . A few years ago, we started including the PC6 point on the wrist, which has been helpful. I’ve always have tried to be careful, since I’ve read about the dangers of this point on this very forum, so I don’t move, and I am very quick to tell him to stop turning the needles as soon as I feel any tinge of anything.
So, I was at acupuncture last week, and I had placed a towel under my back that was causing me a lot of discomfort. I needed to move it, but I was afraid of irritating PC6. I managed to lift myself up and gently get it out of the way with my right hand. I felt nothing unusual in my hand or wrist, and felt I was in the clear. The rest of the appointment went fine without incident. Soon after we were done, I noticed a strange burning near the tip of my right index finger. I’ve had burning near acupuncture points before that have lasted a few hours, but this wasn’t near any point. It has persisted for 9 days running now.
The irritation is on the left side only of my distal knuckle of my right index finger. The actual tip of the finger is spared–it goes from halfway in my nail to the knuckle on the left side of the finger only. It is an area about 1/2 inch in diameter. Sometimes I feel it under my nail. It has been actually more like allodynia instead of a constant burning. Any light touch or brushing causes it to burn like fire. Leaving it alone typically has relieved the discomfort. Cold has not bothered it so far, but heat can aggravate it. Moving it can cause problems, too since it causes friction on the skin with the knuckle moving. The area is not numb at all, and can feel light touch, pinprick, vibration, heat, and cold just fine. There is no tingling, shock sensations, nothing like nerve pain I’m familiar with–just the burning allodynia in that one small spot. that has tended to go away (so far) as long as the spot isn’t touched or moved a lot. There is no inflammation, redness or swelling. At one point last week, it might have looked a bit puffy, but not by much. It certainly doesn’t look that way now. No tiniel sign at the wrist. The pain isn’t aggravated by wrist movements that I can tell. There was no visible bruising by the point. There has been zero improvement in the 9 days since it started. None.
I am convinced that my median nerve got nicked at PC6 in a small spot of fibers that innervates that area of my finger and since there has been no improvement and a delay in diagnosis or treatment, this burning allodynia will likely be permanent. Problem is, I can’t get anyone to believe me. Since it is so localized with “no connections” and there are no shooting pains, no tingling or numbness, and no pain or other symptoms in the wrist, palm, or other fingers, everyone tells me I must have injured my finger at some point in some way prior to the appointment. That is possible. I was running errands, but to have zero improvement in 9 days? “It doesn’t sound like nerve pain to me” is what I hear, and yet what else can cause such a persistent allodynia with no sign of swelling or inflammation?
I am asking for your expert opinions on this issue, since it is acupuncture related. Can a localized symptom like this be caused by nicking the median nerve at PC-6 or is this likely something else? Any help or advice is greatly appreciated! I’ve been greatly despondent over the thought of permanent burning pain in a finger I use a lot the rest of my life over something like this. Did acupuncture possibly do this or am I barking up the wrong tree?
Any thoughts, observations, advice would be greatly appreciated. Thank you again!