Crocheted Lace Wrist Supports  Elastic wrist supports, cotton; 2010

Crocheted Lace Wrist Supports
Elastic wrist supports, cotton; 2010

In January 2010 I decided to make some pieces using fine crochet thread. Soon after embarking upon these items, I discovered that I was losing sensation in the right side of my right hand, developed pins and needles in the two outer fingers and my elbow was painful.

This wasn’t the first crochet I had ever done, but it was the first time I had experienced such severe physical side effects. A rudimentary self-diagnosis concluded that, being pregnant, I was probably experiencing Cubital Tunnel Syndrome as a result of fluid retention and nerve compression in my elbow. Turns out that crochet can be hard work. Debilitating even.

Cubital tunnel syndrome occurs when the ulnar nerve is pressed at the level of the elbow on the inner side of the joint (funny bone area). The nerve passes through a narrow tunnel called the cubital tunnel. It is the area just behind the funny bone. When there is a build up of pressure in this tunnel the nerve becomes squashed and causes the symptoms of cubital tunnel syndrome.

Symptoms: Pins and needles in the little, and ring fingers and the inner side of the forearm. This commonly occurs at night and the patient is often awakened from sleep with the pins and needles and has to shake their hands to gain relief. Occasionally in severe cases the muscles on the front of the palm on the little finger side can become wasted causing a hollow. In such severe cases the thumb may be weak or clumsy.

So in defiance, and instead of finishing the pieces I originally began, I crocheted a pair of lace wrist supports.