While the elbow joint is less prone to overuse and wear-and-tear damage than other joints, it can still develop injuries or conditions that cause pain. If you have elbow pain that interferes with your daily activities, it’s important to seek medical care.
Dr. Ghodadra will ask you detailed questions about the symptoms and when they first started, then examine your elbow for tenderness and dysfunction. He may also order diagnostic tests, such as X-rays or an MRI, to confirm the diagnosis.
Many elbow problems respond well to a combination of rest, proper technique, physical therapy, stretching exercises and over-the-counter pain relievers. However, if your pain persists after six to 12 months of extensive non-surgical treatment, surgery may be recommended.
In open surgery, Los Angeles Elbow Pain Relief Doctor remove a small chip of bone and possibly a damaged portion of tendon. In elbow arthroscopy, your doctor makes small incisions to view and repair the joint. This procedure can also be used to treat a partially torn rotator cuff.
For patients with a chronic tennis or golfer’s elbow condition who have tried the entire gamut of conservative treatments, we offer an office-based injection treatment called prolotherapy (proliferation therapy). This treatment is an injection of simple dextrose that initiates a signaling response that mimics the body’s natural healing process. The injection also stimulates the growth of new tendon tissue. This can be a very effective solution for persistent elbow pain. We use this treatment to treat tennis elbow, golfer’s elbow, ulnar collateral ligament injuries, and other conditions that involve trapped nerves.
PT is a key component of recovery from an injury. It can help you heal faster and return to your normal life activities more quickly. A good therapist has a deep understanding of how different systems in the body integrate with movement. A physical therapist can diagnose patients based on their movement patterns and tailor their treatment plans to keep them healthy and active.
During the first session, your PT will ask detailed questions about your symptoms and their severity. They’ll also review your typical activities and medical history. They will design a plan of care that includes at-home exercises and manual therapies like massage or electric stimulation. It’s important to stick to your PT’s plan and do the exercises they give you, in the correct order and frequency.
They may prescribe a brace to decrease the stress on your injured muscles and tendons. They may also use ice or heat packs, ultrasound treatments and TENS therapy (which uses low voltage electric current to stimulate nerves and reduce pain). Medications like non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs or steroid injections can also be helpful.
Many people manage pain and fever with over-the-counter (OTC) medications. You can purchase aspirin, ibuprofen and acetaminophen without a prescription at most pharmacies. These medicines decrease or stop minor aches and pains, lower fevers and help reduce inflammation in some cases.
However, OTC pain relievers aren’t created equal. Aspirin, ibuprofen, and acetaminophen are all effective for headache, period cramps, toothache, and other pain, but they each offer unique benefits and work differently in the body.
For example, ibuprofen is an anti-inflammatory drug that also offers antioxidant benefits. Meanwhile, acetaminophen (Tylenol) does not reduce inflammation and acts more as a simple pain reliever. It’s important to read labels carefully, as hundreds of OTC and prescription medications contain acetaminophen including Excedrin, Nyquil, Mucinex and Theraflu. NSAIDs such as ibuprofen, naproxen, and celecoxib can cause gastrointestinal bleeding and heart problems in some individuals. However, these medications are helpful for sudden (acute) pain. They can also be taken as a topical medication, such as an ointment or a patch.
Even with the best physical therapy, some people will require surgery to manage their elbow pain. It’s important for people who are considering surgery to do their research on surgeons and procedures. Choosing the right doctor and optimizing your health can make all the difference in how successful and quick your recovery is.
Whether your elbow pain is temporary or chronic, it’s important to seek medical attention as soon as possible to avoid complications. Contacting a physician immediately can help prevent and treat a range of elbow conditions, including fractures and dislocations, tendonitis, infections, arthritis, and other joint degeneration.
NEIL GHODADRA, M.D. provides patient-centered care with the goal of finding the root cause of your elbow pain to provide fast and effective treatment. He asks detailed questions about your pain and when it began, the underlying injury that caused it (if known), and your typical activities and medical history to customize his evaluation. He then performs a physical examination and diagnostic testing to confirm or rule out a diagnosis.