The elbow is a complex hinge joint that allows you the full range of motion in your arms and wrist. If there is an injury to the elbow, your entire arm and mobility will be affected.
For individuals who rely on the mobility of their arms for their occupation and everyday lives (as most of us do) having strong, functional elbows is essential.
Common Elbow Conditions
Chronic pain is a sign of an underlying elbow condition, which if left untreated, could worsen.
If you suffer from prolonged or intense elbow pain, then it’s likely that you have a medical condition that requires treatment.
If you suspect that you have an elbow condition, schedule an appointment with an orthopedic specialist in Kirkland to avoid letting the problem fester. Scheduling an appointment with an orthopedic doctor at OPA will give you peace of mind and will also make you aware of your best treatment options for your elbow condition.
Here are some of the most common elbow conditions that affect Kirkland residents.
Arthritis in the Elbow
Arthritis is a condition that can affect any joint in the body and a variety of different ways.
The most common two ways that arthritis affects and limits movement in the elbows are listed below.
- Osteoarthritis: this type of arthritis occurs gradually as the cartilage in the elbow deteriorates. Common symptoms of osteoarthritis in the elbow include stiffness and chronic pain.
- Rheumatoid arthritis: slightly more complex, rheumatoid arthritis causes your immune system to attack the tissue in your elbows, resulting in swelling and pain.
Sports-related elbow conditions are often the result of either a physical trauma accident or repetitive motion (e.g. pitching a baseball).
Overuse of your elbow during sports can result in an injury or strain, making it necessary for you to receive orthopedic treatments.
Common sports-related injuries that affect elbow function are:
- Olecranon Stress Fracture
- Flexor Tendinitis
- Valgus Extension Overload (VEO)
- Ulnar Collateral Ligament (UCL) injury
- Ulnar Neuritis
All of these injuries are painful cam limit mobility in elbow, arms, wrists, and hands. Getting treatment for these conditions is necessary to maintain health and ensure that your body can function optimally.
Tendon Tear or Rupture Affecting the Elbow
A tear or rupture in any of the tendons along the arm will affect the mobility of your elbow. Especially true of tears or ruptures in the bicep, as this is the tendon primarily relied on for strength and movement throughout the arm.
Distal bicep tears or ruptures may occur due to lifting something that is too heavy or if the elbow was suddenly straightened while the bicep was flexed.
Elbow fractures are commonly the result of sudden physical trauma to one of the three bones that connect to the elbow. Fractures to the elbow often occur due to falling and landing on the elbow or a forceful blow to the arm.
Another type of elbow fracture is overuse or a stress fracture.
These occur if you repetitively move your elbow certain ways — an unfortunate necessity of many occupations. Repetitive motions cause small cracks to form in the elbow bone, creating a painful stress fracture.
To avoid permanent damage to your elbow, fractures should be treated immediately with orthopedic care.
Growth Plate Injury
Growth plates cause the bones to grow in developing children and adolescents. If a growth plate is injured due to sudden trauma (growth plate injuries often occur during sports) the child may suffer from bone growth problems.
Tendinitis in the Elbow
Another kind of overuse injury is tendinitis, which can occur on the outside (tennis elbow) or inside (golfers elbow) tendons of the elbow.
Contrary to what some might think, anyone — not just active sports players, can suffer from these types of tendinitis due to tendon overuse.
Ulnar Nerve Entrapment
Your ulnar nerve runs from your neck to your fingers. If this nerve becomes pinched or irritated (nerve entrapment) you may have difficulty bending your elbow and experience pain or stiffness.
Ulnar Collateral Ligament
Ulnar collateral ligament (UCL) injuries happen when ligaments in the elbow are torn. UCL injuries are usually from stressed, repetitive motion and are extremely painful.
Where to Find Treatments for Elbow Pain in Kirkland
Here at OPA in Kirkland, we have a team of orthopedic doctors who are experienced at treating various kinds of elbow conditions.
We offer different treatments including injections, fracture care, surgical as well as non-surgical options. If you are suffering due to an elbow condition, let our orthopedic specialists help you recover and get back your full mobility.
Schedule an appointment with OPA in Kirkland today.