Elbow pain is very common an often caused by repetitive microtrauma to surrounding structures due to repetitive activities or over use of hand , wrist and arm.
Elbow joint formed where three bones come together – your arm bone called the humerus above and the radius and the ulna below the forearm bones .They are keep in place with tough tissues called ligaments .And tendons connect bones to muscle to allow to move arm in different ways.
Elbow disorder may involve
- Arm and forearm muscle
- Elbow ligaments
- Bones in the elbow
Elbow pain that encountered in day to day activity are
- Tendinitis– which means damage in the tendons around the elbow from over use . Based on the arm motion these are Tennis elbow , Golfer’s elbow and Triceps tendinitis. Tennis elbow is the more common among the conditions.
- Bursitis– Bursa are small sacs with fluid in them .They are present around the joints to help as cushion of bones , tendons and muscles. They also help skin to slide over bone. Sometimes they get swollen and cause pain known as bursitis. Tow bursitis are common around the elbow Olecranon bursitis and Cubital bursitis.
- Trapped nerve-When nerves get squeezed as they run through tissue are called trapped nerve. Radial tunnel syndrome ,one of the main nerve the radial nerve when squeezes through the radial tunnel near the outside of elbow. Tardy ulnar palsy or Cubital tunnel syndrome, have the similar issue with the ulnar nerve when passes through cubital tunnel situated front and middle of the elbow.
- Arthritis– many types of arthritis can affect elbow, but most ones are Rheumatoid arthritis and Osteoarthritis.
- Osteochondritis dissecans –it is also called panner,s disease. Dislodgement of any piece of bone or cartilage inside the joint.
- Dislocation and bone fracture.
- Others disease like Gout, Lyme disease, SLE may causes elbow pain.
Most of the elbow pain are due to strained and inflamed soft tissues.
Sign & symptoms of common elbow disease:
Tennis elbow– it is also known as lateral epicondylitis. You may feel a localize pain out side of elbow joint that worse by active movement of wrist with an inability to hold a cup and grip strength become diminish.
Golfer’s elbow–– it is also known as medial epicondylitis. You may feel a localize pain inner side of elbow joint that worse by active movement of wrist with an inability to hold a cup and grip strength become diminish
Olecranon bursitis – its also called student’s elbow .pain start at back of the elbow with a swelling during extension.
Cubital bursitis – pain at front of the elbow with a swelling during flexion.
Tardy ulnar palsy– you may have pain front of the elbow with muscle weakness of hand & forearm and muscle wasting & loss of sensation inner aspect of hand. you may have also burning or numbness in your hand ,arm &fingers.
Radial tunnel syndrome– You may feel a localize pain out side of elbow joint that worse by active movement of wrist with an inability to hold a cup and grip strength become diminish .sometimes tingling and burning sensation may present.
Most of the elbow pain can be diagnosed after a simple examination and clinical features. It is unlikely you will need to have any special test.
Doctor may suggest an X-ray, which can show any new bone growth, small pieces of loose bone or arthritis. Sometimes a nerve conduction test may needed if you have been having problems with nerve.
Rest (Brace or immobilization)
Pain killer- paracetamol , NSAID’s.
Platelate rich plasma injection