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Review | Open Access

Research progress on the diagnoses and rehabilitation for cubital tunnel syndrome: A narrative review

Jinyan SunLin MaoXiaohong WuDaming WangZuobing Chen( )
Department of Rehabilitation Medicine, First Affiliated Hospital, Zhejiang University School of Medicine, Hangzhou 310003, Zhejiang, China
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Cubital tunnel syndrome (CTS) is a chronic condition caused by the compression of the ulnar nerve at the elbow. The ulnar nerve is susceptible to entrapment at multiple sites along its path, with the elbow joint being the most critical. Symptoms typically include numbness in the ulnar nerve distribution area, hand muscle atrophy, and weakness. Patients exhibiting mild symptoms can be treated conservatively, whereas those with moderate to severe symptoms often require surgical intervention. Extensive research has been conducted on the clinical treatment of CTS. The complex etiology of this condition, coupled with the unique anatomical structure of the ulnar nerve, has led to less-than-satisfactory clinical outcomes. Physiotherapy plays an important role in aiding nerve recovery and reducing disability rates. Initiating physiotherapy early can address the cause of the disease, mitigate nerve damage, improve functional impairment due to nerve injury, and enhance the quality of patients’ daily activities. However, definitive guidelines for the treatment and evaluation of cubital tunnel syndrome are lacking. This review compiles the various modalities and advancements in the diagnosis and rehabilitation of CTS, drawing from recent domestic and international literature. It summarizes and compares the diagnostic tools currently employed in clinical practice and offers suggestions for physicians and therapists in selecting personalized diagnostic tools for patient assessment. Additionally, the review describes various rehabilitation methods, providing fresh insights for patients with cubital tunnel syndrome who have received conservative or surgical treatment.

Journal of Neurorestoratology
Article number: 100116
Cite this article:
Sun J, Mao L, Wu X, et al. Research progress on the diagnoses and rehabilitation for cubital tunnel syndrome: A narrative review. Journal of Neurorestoratology, 2024, 12(2): 100116.






Web of Science




Received: 25 August 2023
Revised: 24 December 2023
Accepted: 18 January 2024
Published: 29 March 2024
© 2024

This is an open access article under the CC BY license (