You would think injuries to this area wouldn’t be too much of a major, however with an elbow injury turning a door handle, starting a car, mowing the lawns, hammering in a nail, or playing golf, all become severely restricted, painful and sometimes impossible.
The elbow is a hinge joint connecting the humerus, or arm bone, to the forearm which is made up of the radius and ulna. The forearm muscles which are responsible for all the gripping you do, attach across the elbow – the wrist flexors to the inside of the elbow and the wrist extensors to the outside of the elbow.
These bony prominences are the sites for the famous “tennis” and “golfers” elbow, described below. Ligaments are on each side of the elbow joining bone to bone and providing increased stability. Like other body areas, elbow injury can occur from an acute injury or chronic overuse. This can start a cascade of inflammatory events, resulting in pain and weakness, overall limiting your ability to function with normal activities of daily living.
How Physio mechanics can help:
If left untreated minor elbow injuries can cause long term complications. Physio mechanics can help. On your first visit we will perform a thorough initial assessment allowing us to confirm your diagnosis and answer any questions you have. From there we will devise an individualised short term treatment plan to relieve your current symptoms, and a long term plan to prevent future reoccurrences.
Common elbow physio treatments include massage, trigger point release, tendon frictioning, elbow muscle unloading techniques – bracing or taping, and stretching and strengthening exercises. If you are suffering from any elbow aches or pains ring today and arrange an appointment with one of our expert staff.
Some common elbow injuries we treat are .....
Tennis elbow - Tennis elbow is a term for lateral epicondylitis. It is by far the most common presentation of lateral elbow pain. It affects the attachment site of the wrist extensor muscle group, which runs on the back of your forearm, into the outside of your elbow. Acute injury to this tendon could cause a possible disruption or tear. Chronic overuse from repetitive movements such as typing, hammering or playing tennis could cause tendon thickening and inflammation. Whether acute or chronic, when this extensor tendon is affected you will have significant pain and be severely limited when performing any gripping or lifting movements, which are surprisingly most things you use your hands for.
Golfers elbow - The only difference between tennis elbow described above, and golfers elbow is instead of affecting the lateral elbow, it is irritation to the forearm flexor muscles which run on the front of the forearm and attach into the inside of the elbow. Acute injury to this tendon could cause a possible disruption or tear. Chronic overuse from repetitive movements such as typing, gardening or playing golf could cause tendon thickening and inflammation. Whether acute or chronic, when this flexor tendon is affected you will have significant pain and be severely limited when performing any gripping or lifting movements, which are surprisingly most things you use your hands for.
Olecranon bursitis – Your olecranon is the bony prominence at the back of your elbow. A bursa is a fluid filled sac that sits between bone and tendon to reduce frictional rubbing between the two surfaces with joint movement. Olecranon bursitis therefore is inflammation of the bursa that sits over the bony prominence that we know as the elbow. Most commonly this is caused by a direct fall onto this point, squashing the bursa and in severe cases bursting the bursa. In these cases you will see a characteristic fluid filled lump at the back of your elbow.
Radial nerve entrapment – the radial nerve exits the spinal cord at the base of the neck, travels down the back of the arm and wraps itself around the outside of the elbow before entering and supplying the back of the forearm and into the thumb side of the hand. A common entrapment of the radial nerve is around the lateral elbow, commonly due to thickening of the common extensor tendon in tennis elbow sufferers. This will usually results in sharp shooting pain, tingling or possible numbness into the back of the forearm and commonly refers towards the thumb and index finger.