The Anatomy, Presentation and Management Options of Cubital Tunnel Syndrome

J Hand Surg Asian Pac Vol. 2020 Dec;25(4):393-401. doi: 10.1142/S2424835520400032.


Cubital tunnel syndrome is the second most common nerve compression syndrome seen in the upper limb. Paresthesia and weakness are the two most common presentations in the hand. If left untreated, compression can lead to irreversible nerve damage, resulting in a loss of function of the forearm and hand. Therefore, recognizing the various clinical presentations of cubital tunnel syndrome can lead to early detection and prevention of nerve damage. Conservative management is usually tried first and involves supporting the elbow using a splint. If this fails and symptoms do not improve, surgical management is indicated. There are 3 main surgical techniques used to relieve compression of the nerve. These are simple decompression, anterior transposition and medial epicondylectomy. Studies comparing the techniques have demonstrated particular advantages to using one or another. However, the overall technique of choice is based on both the clinical scenario and the surgeon's digression. Following primary cubital tunnel surgery, recurrent symptoms can often occur due to a variety of pathological and non-pathological causes and revision surgery is usually warranted. This article provides a complete review of cubital tunnel syndrome.

Keywords: Cubital; Decompression; Review; Syndrome; Tunnel.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Conservative Treatment
  • Cubital Tunnel Syndrome / classification
  • Cubital Tunnel Syndrome / diagnosis*
  • Cubital Tunnel Syndrome / therapy*
  • Decompression, Surgical
  • Humans
  • Muscle, Skeletal / innervation
  • Physical Examination
  • Reoperation
  • Risk Factors
  • Ulnar Nerve / anatomy & histology*