ELBOW

Anatomy

The elbow and forearm form a functional unit whose primary role is to accurately position the hand in space. view 

Elbow Contusion

An elbow contusion results from blunt direct trauma and produces muscle strains and ligament sprains. view 

Ligament Tears and Elbow Fractures

Fractures about the elbow are the result of high energy injuries. view 

Forearm Compartment Syndrome

Compartment syndrome in all extremities is an orthopedic emergency. view

Elbow/Forearm Wounds/Amputations

Wounds occurring in the forearm and elbow must be treated as an emergency because the risk of infection if left open increases about 7 hours after an injury has occurred. view

Elbow Arthritis

Arthritis in the elbow can occur after an injury (post-traumatic arthritis), congenital lack of blood supply to the bone causing flaking off of the cartilage called Osteochondritis Dessicans. view

Cubital Tunnel Syndrome

Cubital tunnel syndrome is the compression of the ulnar nerve at the level of the elbow. view

Pronator Syndrome

Pronator syndrome is the compression of the median nerve around the elbow and palmar side of the forearm. Because it is the same nerve that causes carpal tunnel syndrome, there is overlap in the symptoms making the diagnosis difficult, at times. view

RTS & PIN Palsy

Radial tunnel syndrome and posterior Interosseous Nerve palsy are both a result of compression of the Posterior interosseous nerve with a more severe compression occurring in posterior interosseous nerve palsy. view

Lateral Epicondylitis, Medial epicondylitis, Distal Biceps Tendon Rupture

Lateral epicondyltis also called tennis elbow and medial epicondylitis called golfers elbow is a condition affecting the forearm muscles’ on the humeral bone at the elbow called the lateral and medial epicondylitis respectively. view

Elbow Stiffness

The cause of a stiff elbow is either at the bony level or the collagen capsule/ligament level or both. view

Elbow and Forearm Infections

The elbow, like the shoulder is well perfused with ample blood supply allowing for circulating white blood cells to offer excellent protection against infection and, consequently an elbow infection is uncommon. view

Elbow Tumors

Tumors are divided into benign and malignant types. A benign tumor is an abnormal growth of a particular cell type presenting as a mass. view

ELBOW TUMORS

Pathology

Types of Tumors

  • Benign
  • Malignant

Benign tumor is an abnormal growth of a particular cell type presenting as a mass. The benign tumor is normally excised when the size of the mass is large enough to put pressure on the surrounding tissue and cause pain, or when the mass is cosmetically unsightly.

Malignant tumors bear the common name of “cancer.” These are tumors that divide aggressively and destroy the tissue planes around them. They eventually metastasize or travel to other parts of the body.

The only tumors treated at ROC about the elbow are benign tumors.

These include:

  • Lipomas or Fatty Tumors – They cause symptoms when they develop to a large size
  • Articular (joint) Ganglion Cysts – Commonly develop in patients with rheumatoid arthritis
  • Bony Tumors like Osteochondromatosis, or Heterotopic Ossification – Their presence causes pain due to the space occupying effect

Malignant tumors about the elbow are referred to MD Anderson because of their expertise and success in handling malignant tumors with a team approach and because of their proximity to our office.

 

Treatment

Benign tumors about the elbow are treated by simple excision. If tumor excision requires deep dissection to the joint, therapy after surgery to avoid an elbow contracture is often used. Most benign soft tissue tumors excised about the elbow have full return of elbow function within four weeks of surgery.