This handout explains the follow-up care after surgery to transpose the ulnar nerve at the elbow. The pressure around your ulnar nerve has been relieved and the nerve has been moved to the proper position in your elbow, to relieve pressure and avoid instability. Because the nerve has been moved, there is often some irritation producing some numbness and tingling in your ring and small finger for several hours or days, which is normal. You have a drain in place to remove fluid from around the surgery site and to decrease the risk of infection. Please continue to take your antibiotics until the drain has been removed. We can schedule removal of the drain for you at our office in 2 days, or the nurse can instruct you on how to remove this at home. A splint has been set in place to maintain your thumb in as straight a position as possible. Please do not lift anything with the operative hand until instructed to do so after therapy. If the splint feels tight, it’s okay to unwrap and rewrap the Ace bandages.
If the skin around the incision is red or if there is drainage coming out of it please call us right away. The phone number is at the bottom of this page. Go to the emergency room if this occurs at night or on a weekend. You will be scheduled to begin a therapy program within a week after surgery to introduce gentle range of motion exercises and to make a more comfortable splint once swelling has decreased. If you do not have an appointment to begin post-operative therapy, please contact our office and we will coordinate that for you.