Numbness is a condition characterized by the lack of normal sensation in a given area of the body. Sensation loss and accompanying pain in the hands and fingers have a number of potential underlying causes.
In addition to sharp pain, numbness in the hands or fingers can be accompanied by burning, weakness or tingling, according to the Mayo Clinic.
The Mayo Clinic cites potential underlying causes of numbness and pain in the hands and fingers that include type 2 diabetes, carpal tunnel syndrome, alcoholism, spinal cord injury, ulnar nerve compression, amyloidosis and Lyme disease.
Additional potential underlying causes include Guillain-Barre syndrome, stroke, syphilis, peripheral neuropathy, chemotherapy side effects, Raynaud’s disease, vasculitis, cervical spine narrowing (spondylosis) and vitamin B12 deficiency, according to the Mayo Clinic.
The U.S. National Library of Medicine notes that traumatic injuries of the cervical (neck) spine can result in nerve damage that triggers numbness in the hand or arm.
The Mayo Clinic notes that individuals with hand or finger numbness should seek medical attention if numbness extends to the entire arm, starts suddenly or occurs simultaneously with paralysis, weakness, dizziness, confusion, rapid onset of severe headache or speech difficulties.
M. Gideon Hoyle is a writer living outside of Houston. Previously, he produced brochures and a wide variety of other materials for a nonprofit educational foundation. He now specializes in topics related to health, exercise and nutrition, publishing for various websites.