Dealing with Elbow and Shoulder Pain

It may not be easy to imagine how you would injure your shoulder unless its dislocation can be popped back. Shoulder injuries occur more often than you think and may require urgent treatment as they affect your arm movements. Injuries to your elbow, on the other hand, are pretty common. Any clumsy movements may result in you hurting your elbow. Pain in these areas may also be a result of underlying conditions. If you are looking for a La Jolla, CA orthopedic shoulder & elbow surgeon, continue reading the article to learn about these injuries and their possible treatment plans.

Understanding Elbow and Shoulder Conditions

A shoulder is a ball-and-socket joint with the upper arm having a round-shaped edge to fit into a hollow socket found in the shoulder blade. This joint is the most flexible in your body.

The elbow is a type of hinge joint that connects the upper part of the arm to the forearm. This allows for flexibility in the lower sectors of your arm.

The elbow and shoulder are held together with various soft tissues, including tendons and ligaments. Tendons connect muscles to the bone, whereas ligaments connect bones to other bones. A thin cartilage layer covers these areas to minimize friction during movement.

Damage from injury or disease is characterized by experiences of numbness, pain, or reduced range of motion. Elbows and shoulders are easily prone to injury due to their frequent use.

Several disorders may lead to shoulder pain, such as:

Osteoarthritis is a condition resulting from cartilage loss or degeneration causing friction between bones; thus, pain is felt in the joints.

Bursitis is a discomforting condition caused by the swelling of the tiny, fluid-filled sacs, known as bursae, which lubricate and protect tendons, bones, and muscles around the elbow and shoulder.

Cubital Tunnel Syndrome is a problem similar to carpal tunnel syndrome and is caused by pressure on the elbow or shoulder due to leaning, long periods of use, or being placed in an awkward position.

Frozen Elbow is caused by gradual elbow degeneration leading to pain and limited movement and may result in scarring tissue in the elbow joint.

Elbow or Shoulder Arthrosis is characterized by loss of movement and pain due to damage to the elbow or shoulder joint resulting in cartilage damage and rubbing between bones.

Elbow and shoulder pain treatment is typically through rest, ice, compression, and elevation. This, in conjunction with anti-inflammatory medications like NSAIDs, assist in reducing pain and relieving inflammation.

The use of a sling, brace, or splint helps rest the body part until the pain goes away. However, their use is limited so as not to reduce muscle mass or lower flexibility. Physical therapy and injections may be administered for pain that is not residing conservatively.

If surgery is unavoidable, some routine surgical operations can be done, including:

  •         Rotator cuff surgery
  •         Arthroscopy
  •         Elbow or shoulder replacement

Athletes are the ones who are at the most significant risk of getting elbow and shoulder injuries depending on the sport they do. Pain and discomfort may significantly reduce their performance levels. Go through our website or check out our La Jolla, CA offices for suitable treatment plans.

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