BMJ Case Reports 2018; doi:10.1136/bcr-2017-221302
  • Case report
  • Acupuncture in Medicine case report

Radial nerve injury following dry needling

Open Access
  1. May Cleary2
  1. 1 Department of Orthopaedics, University Hospital Waterford, Waterford, Ireland
  2. 2 Department of Trauma and Orthopaedics, University Hospital Waterford, Waterford, Ireland
  1. Correspondence to Dr Robin McManus, robinmcmanus{at}
  • Accepted 14 January 2018
  • Published 26 January 2018


A 27-year-old secretary presented to an orthopaedic outpatients department with a 1-month history of left wrist drop following dry needling. On insertion of a needle, she reported spasms in her left hand followed by a wrist drop. An MRI scan was normal. Electromyogram and nerve conduction studies showed a neuropraxia of the left radial nerve. She was referred to a hand therapist for splinting and intensive hand therapy; however, her symptoms remain unchanged.


  • Contributors Clinical work-up and all the work surrounding the write-up of this case have been under the stewardship of MC. MC is the acting guarantor for this work. RM is an orthopaedic SHO at University Hospital Waterford. He reviewed the patient in the clinic, has followed the patient’s investigation results, performed a literature search on this topic and wrote the case report under the guidance of MC.

  • Funding This research received no specific grant from any funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Patient consent Obtained.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.

  • Author note This case was presented to the Department of Trauma and Orthopaedics in University Hospital Waterford. This patient is under the care of MC, Consultant Orthopaedic Surgeon.

This is an Open Access article distributed in accordance with the Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial (CC BY-NC 4.0) license, which permits others to distribute, remix, adapt, build upon this work non-commercially, and license their derivative works on different terms, provided the original work is properly cited and the use is non-commercial. See:

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