MSK Physiotherapy - Elbow
Important Facts About Your Elbow - Please Read
Here is a list of the main problems and concerns when we would recommend you get checked out by a health professional before commencing self-management exercises. These are called Red Flags and may indicate a more serious problem that requires medical assessment.
Symptoms That Are Present After Trauma
If your symptoms are caused by a recent traumatic incident (e.g. a fall, football tackle) and you have any of the following symptoms:
- Significant bruising and swelling in the area
- Difficulty in moving elbow or seems locked in one position
- Looks a different shape to the other side, new lumps and bumps that have appeared since the injury.
- Loss of ability to use your hand normally
NOTE: If you have an underlying poor bone density (e.g. osteoporosis) smaller amounts of force can cause the problems listed above.
Symptoms Where No Trauma Was Involved
- Hot, red and/or swelling of elbow
- Tingling, numbness and/ or pins and needles into arm, hand or fingers
- Worsening weakness in your arm and/or loss of movement
- Unexplained lumps or bumps which are changing/growing.
- Fever and generally feeling unwell at same time as elbow pain developed.
- Pain and/ or stiffness in other joints at the same time as elbow pain developed
- Constant pain which appears to not change with rest/ activity.
- Significant worsening pain at night in bed
- Unexplained weight loss and/ or previous history of cancer
NOTE: Special attention should be taken if you have a history of long-term steroid use/ immunosuppressive drugs, recent joint replacement, surgery, steroid injection. Rheumatoid arthritis or other joint disease. Recent infection, intravenous drug use or alcohol misuse.
Elbow Information and Exercise Links