Elbow Dislocation Overview

Dislocated elbows are a very common occurrence.  A dislocated elbow happens when the bones that make up the elbow joint become out of alignment.

If you have recently taken a tumble and landed on an outstretched hand, you may be experiencing a dislocated elbow.  Dislocated elbows can also result from a serious accident, such as a car crash.

Symptoms of a Dislocated Elbow

  1. Elbow pain
  2. Unable to bend arm properly
  3. Swelling
  4. Visible out of alignment joint

Risk Factors for Experiencing a Dislocated Elbow

  1. Heredity
  2. Sports
  3. Intense exercise programs
  4. Age

Complications with elbow conditions rarely occur.  The prognosis for a dislocated elbow is almost always outstanding.  In a few instances, a dislocated elbow can increase the risk for:

  1. Pinched nerves
  2. Osteoarthritis
  3. Fracture
  4. Trapped arteries

The pain caused from a dislocated elbow is generally great enough to seek medical attention rather quickly.  Urgent care and emergency room visits are common when an elbow becomes dislocated.

The doctor will thoroughly examine the joint.  The medical examiner will also check if the hand or arm is numb or feels cold as this could indicate a fracture.  An X-ray is often ordered to rule out a fracture.

How to Treat a Dislocated Elbow

The doctor will perform a procedure called reduction.  A reduction consists of the doctor manipulating the bones back into proper alignment.

Medication is often given to reduce pain and relax the muscles.  Once the joint is back into alignment, you may have to wear a splint for 2-3 weeks.

Physical therapy could be prescribed as an additional treatment once the joints are properly aligned. Physical therapy is an excellent treatment method for the suitable and complete healing of a dislocated elbow.

Our team of physical therapists at JAG Physical Therapy is highly skilled in treating elbow injuries.  We want you to be on your way to a full recovery. Our physical therapy program is designed to treat your dislocated elbow as safely and effectively as possible.  Our caring and supportive physical therapists will take every measure to ensure your comfort and success.

We know how important it is to resume the activities that you love.  This is why we are dedicated to helping you heal from a dislocated elbow. If you have been diagnosed with an elbow dislocation, contact the JAG Physical Therapy location nearest you.

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