What Causes Elbow Pain, What are the Treatment Methods ?

In this publication, you can find answers to questions such as what is elbow pain, what causes elbow pain, what are the treatment methods for elbow pa


What Causes Elbow Pain, What are the Treatment Methods ?


What Causes Elbow Pain, What are the Treatment Methods ?

In this publication, you can find answers to questions such as what is elbow pain, what causes elbow pain, what are the treatment methods for elbow pain, how does elbow pain go away.

There are many possible causes of elbow pain. In connection with the great mobility of the shoulder joint, the elbow contributes to very precisely controllable motor function, which allows a large number of throwing or striking movements.

Irritations to the joint are usually caused by unilateral movement patterns that occur in certain sports or occupations, often very monotonous and of high intensity over the years.

Any movement of the elbow, eg. B. Throwing or hitting movements stress certain parts of tendons and ligaments. This can lead to painful tendinitis ( tendinopathies ) or long term wear and tear on joint surfaces and elbow arthrosis .

It is important to know the exact conditions of the source of the pain for diagnosis. A young handball player or tennis player definitely has a different stress profile than a middle-aged office worker.

Elbow Anatomy

The elbow region is anatomically called the cubital region. The joint is stabilized by a combination of bony joint guidance, collateral ligaments, and tendon attachments. Only a stable elbow joint can work without pain in the long run.

The range of motion of the elbow joint is variable. Bending and extension of the elbow (hinge movement) as well as inward and outward rotation of the elbow (rotational movement) are possible. Therefore, the elbow is a rotating hinge joint.

The greatest relaxation of the joint occurs when the forearm is slightly bent. Patients with inflammation or effusion in the joint automatically adopt this protective stance.

What Causes Elbow Pain, What are the Treatment Methods ?


When Should You See A Doctor For Elbow Pain?

If the pain does not go away with rest after an elbow injury, please see a doctor. If elbow pain is not related to physical exertion, that is, it occurs at rest, you should also see a doctor.

You should also see a doctor if you have very severe pain associated with swelling and bruising around the elbow joint.

Even if joint mobility is severely restricted or completely stiff, you should have it examined by a doctor. You should also consult a doctor immediately in case of severe, painful inflammation, redness and increased temperature (overheating) in the elbow.

What Types of Elbow Pain Are There?

Pain at the inner tendon junction of the elbow (ulnar epicondylitis): Golfer's elbow

Bilateral elbow pain

Elbow pain when standing up

Pain at the external tendon attachment point (radial epicondylitis): tennis elbow

Painful inflammation of the bursae that allow the skin and tendons to lubricate around the elbow

Unilateral elbow pain radiating from the hand and present with excessive PC work: RSI syndrome or mouse arm

Overloading of the Articular surfaces of the elbow with the formation of osteophytes (bone spurs) and elbow arthrosis

Nerve injury around the elbow (compression or irritation of the ulnar nerve)

Tendon and ligament injuries that stabilize the elbow joint

Elbow pain after a bruise or fall injury

Elbow pain radiating from the cervical spine


What Causes Elbow Pain, What are the Treatment Methods ?

What Causes Elbow Pain?

Arm or elbow pain can have many causes. Joints and bursa can become inflamed as a result of heavy stress. Inflammation can cause bruising and swelling. Calcium deposits can irritate the tendons of the muscles. The consequences of an accident or impingement syndrome also cause severe pain. It is not uncommon for pain in the arm to extend to a cervical spine disease.

Tennis elbow or RSI syndrome is usually caused by a specific work-related overload.

Conservative Treatment of Elbow Pain

Treatment of elbow pain always depends on the underlying cause. Affected individuals should try to avoid overloading the elbow through incorrect loading. In addition to physical therapy exercises to strengthen and stretch the muscles, physical measures such as heat and cold therapy are also helpful.

In acute injuries, the elbow should be fixed with a bandage or plaster in some cases. It's the only way to make sure he's well enough. Anti-inflammatory pain relievers (eg diclofenac, ibuprofen) relieve severe pain and allow inflammation to decrease. However, this does not eliminate the cause.

Elbow pain can usually be treated very well with conservative methods. However, if these measures do not provide any improvement over a longer period of time, only surgery can relieve the pain in the elbow. The treatment decision is based on extensive clinical and imaging diagnoses to clarify the exact cause of elbow pain.

Elbow Surgery

If measures reach their limits, an operation can restore elbow mobility and relieve pain. Only after thorough diagnosis and medical history collection can your orthopedist determine when an operation is meaningful.

Elbow Arthroscopy (Joint Reflection)

In addition to structural damage to ligaments, muscles or tendons, inflammatory changes may necessitate surgery. This includes, for example, chronic bursitis or inflammation of the synovial membrane (synovitis). A minimally invasive arthroscopic procedure is usually sufficient. The doctor may remove an inflamed bursa through a minor surgical access (bursectomy). In a short time, the bursa grows on its own. In this way, loose articular bodies (eg due to arthrosis) or bone splinters formed as a result of an accident can also be removed.

A bacterial infection should always be treated with antibiotics to minimize the risk of sepsis (blood poisoning).

Cartilage Transplantation for Elbow Abrasion and Wear

Cartilage tissue transplantation has proven itself in recent years in the treatment of wear-related (degenerative) joint diseases such as arthrosis. To do this, the doctor removes cartilage tissue from the patient in an arthroscopic operation from a healthy area of ​​​​the joint. These cartilage cells are cultivated and multiplied under sterile conditions in the laboratory and reintroduced into the elbow joint in a later operation.

Within a few weeks, cartilage cells grow steadily into the joint. During this time, the elbow should be immobilized so as not to endanger the process. Full flexibility of the elbow is regained only after a few months.

Exercises for Elbow Pain

Exercises are useful after prolonged immobilization of the elbow (for example, after surgery) or when the triceps or biceps tendons are irritated (for example, due to excessive training load). Be very careful while doing the exercises. If pain occurs during an exercise, end the exercise. Otherwise, avoid exercise until further notice and consult your doctor or physiotherapist. The exercises are only suitable for people with no movement restrictions, eg after operations.

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