Elbow Injuries

Elbow Injuries Specialist
If you’ve been experiencing pain in your elbow that lasts longer than a day or two, you may have sustained an injury to a bone, muscle, or ligament that can cause complications if left untreated. To improve your chances of a full recovery, contact Drs. Sinha and Spencer at STAR Ortho today. They can provide timely expert diagnosis and treatment in the Rancho Mirage and La Quinta, California areas for your convenience. Early treatment is pivotal in maintaining your strength and range of motion and preventing complications.

Elbow Injuries Q & A

What are the most common elbow injuries?

Injuries are either acute or chronic. Common acute injuries include bruises, ligament injuries, tendon injuries, sprains, strains, torn or ruptured muscles, fractures, and dislocations.

Chronic injuries are also called overuse injuries and develop over time because of repetitive activity. The most common overuse injuries include bursitis, tendonitis, and pinched nerves.

What causes elbow injuries?

You’re most likely to experience an elbow injury while playing sports, completing physically demanding work tasks, executing projects around the house or in the yard, or while attempting to break a fall.

If you play contact sports or high-speed sports -- football, soccer, wrestling, in-line skating, biking, skiing, snowboarding, skateboarding, or hockey -- you're at a higher risk of injuries.

Older adults are also at increased risk due to changes in the joint and loss of bone strength and muscle mass over time.

When should I see a doctor for an elbow injury?

It’s important to call a doctor right away if:

  • There is visible deformity present
  • You’re bleeding or have an open wound after an injury
  • You’re experiencing numbness or tingling in the extremity
  • The extremity has lost color, appears blue or pale, and feels cold to the touch
  • The limb is weak
  • Your shoulder joint feels unstable and you’re unable to straighten your arm
  • You’re in severe pain that you can’t manage at home
  • Severe swelling appears quickly after an injury (within 30 minutes)
  • Your signs and symptoms don’t resolve after a couple of days of ice, rest, and anti-inflammatories

Remember, only you know how you feel; it’s always okay to seek medical attention if you aren’t sure.

What kind of doctor treats elbow injuries?

Family medicine doctors can treat minor elbow injuries but will send you to an orthopedic surgeon or sports medicine doctor for treatment of chronic or complex injuries.

Orthopedic surgeons and sports medicine doctors have extensive training and experience in the diagnosis and treatment of bone and joint injuries.

How are elbow injuries treated?

How your provider treats your elbow injury depends on its nature, your medical and family history, and your treatment goals (i.e. pain relief or full return to competitive sports). Treatment may include first aid, immobilization with a brace or cast, physical therapy, anti-inflammatory medications, or surgery.

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