Reasons causing pain in shoulder and elbow joint

Most frequent reasons for twisted shoulder area are trauma: sports trauma, fall, car accident. As with every twist, also in case of shoulder twist, they are very painful and if the person is not capable to locate twisted area in anatomically correct position, one should seek Traumatology – Orthopaedics specialist help.

Twisted body parts occurring due to trauma are usually accompanied by broader damages – ruptures or fractures. They require separate treatment. Young people up to 30 years of age, when they once twist the shoulder, have 80% likelihood twist will reoccur. Therefore surgery is recommended for young people with the purpose to restore anatomic balance in the joint and not to allow reoccurring of the twist. In case of repeated twists not only ligaments of the joint but also bone is damaged. As a consequence arthrosis can develop.

Lateral epicondylitis or tennis elbow is an inflammation of the tendons that joint the forearm muscles on the outside of the elbow. These muscles connect the palm with humerus. Activity of the muscles secures palm movements. Tennis elbow is most frequent elbow problem caused by specific tension, overload or trauma. Tennis elbow manifests as swelling and pain in the external part of the elbow that increases when you move the palm, for example, shaking hands while greeting another person and causes pain. One of the most frequent causes of epicondylitis is work at the computer.

To treat tennis elbow it is necessary to relax the elbow joint. It is recommended to use anti-inflammatory medications, consult Traumatology – Orthopaedics specialist and visit physiotherapist. In separate cases, if it is not possible to prevent the problem, surgical intervention is applied with the aim to relieve or relax the elbow tendon.

During the surgery focal of inflammation is eliminated (resection); approximate location of the focal is determined already before the surgery – by ultrasound examination. During the post-operative period caring regimen for the elbow must be observed for a prolonged period of time (up to 8 weeks). Also work by the computer should be limited.

Medial epicondylitis or golfer’s elbow is inflammation of the internal part of the joint where the bone is attached to the tendons of the muscles. Golfer’s elbow occur due to the repeated bending movements of the palm, as a result muscles of the palm and fingers are overloaded, as well as attachment places of tendons, causing inflammation, swelling and pain in elbow joint.

To treat golfer’s elbow it is necessary to relax elbow joint. It is recommended to use anti-inflammatory medications, consult Traumatology – Orthopaedics specialist and visit physiotherapist. In separate cases, if it is not possible to prevent the problem, surgical intervention is applied with the aim to relieve or relax the affected tendons.

During the surgery focal of inflammation is eliminated (resection); approximate location of the focal is determined already before the surgery – by ultrasound examination. During the post-operative period caring regimen for the elbow must be observed for a prolonged period of time (up to 8 weeks). Also work by the computer should be limited.

 

“Frozen” elbow in the community of doctors is unclear but quite common illness affecting shoulder joint. Illness can occur suddenly or develop gradually with pain in the shoulder that is progressing causing also limited movements. “Frozen” shoulder cause formation of scar tissues in the capsule of shoulder joint. 

Still the reason of illness has not been discovered globally but its course can be observed. Illness can last up to three years. When it is possible to eliminate pain with the help of medicines, after consulting Traumatology – Orthopaedics specialist, it is recommended to patient to visit physiotherapist to restore movements in the joint. Surgical intervention is recommended when the medical and physiotherapist treatment is not successful, and then joint is freed from scar tissues – thus restoring range of movements and preventing reason of the pain.

Rotator cuff injury. The rotator cuff is a group of muscles and tendon that surround the shoulder joint, keeping the head of your upper arm bone firmly within the shallow socket of the shoulder. These tendons can tear due to injury as well as deteriorate during ageing. In case of the damage of tendon pain is usually sharper at night and can be felt in a particular place - upper arm where the muscle attaches to the shoulder bone (in the upper third of the upper arm). If tears in tendons are insignificant, movement limitations are not explicit and only movements that are performed in very wide amplitude can be encumbered.

In case of rotator cuff injury problem is treated with anti-inflammatory medications, physiotherapy and hormonal steroid injections. If this treatment is not successful, surgical intervention is applied – by stitching the damaged places, thus preventing pain and restoring amplitude of movements. 

Rotator cuff tears are treated surgically. In case of tear anti-inflammatory therapy is applied only to relieve symptoms (pain and inflammation).

If the rotator cuff damages are not treated, there is a great likelihood that with time problem would have to be solved by endoprosthesis in shoulder joint.

Shoulder joint overload syndrome. Regular, full amplitude shoulder joint overload while swimming, playing baseball or tennis, due to micro trauma or natural wear of joint while ageing is the most frequent causes of the joint overload. At initial stage you can feel slight pain in the shoulder than can be equally felt both during peace and movements, pain reflects from the shoulder down to the arm, sudden, sharp pain while lifting or grasping objects. When the syndrome progresses; patient start experiencing pain at night, weakness and limited movements, difficulties to perform movements of arms behind the back, for example, zip the dress.

To treat shoulder joint overload syndrome it is necessary to relax the joint. It is recommended to use anti-inflammatory medications, consult Traumatology – Orthopaedics specialist, master and regularly perform complex of physiotherapy exercises. In certain cases, if you do not succeed to prevent the problem, surgical intervention is applied.

Elbow joint overload syndrome frequently occurs after trauma or repeated micro trauma, for example, to sports gymnasts. Patients develop limited movements in one or several directions (inability to straighten or bend the elbow) or in both directions (inability to achieve full movement amplitude).

For treatment of elbow joint overload syndrome it is necessary to relax the joint. It is recommended to use anti-inflammatory medications, consult Traumatology – Orthopaedics specialist, master and regularly perform complex of physiotherapy exercises. In certain cases, if you do not succeed to prevent the problem, surgical intervention is applied.

In post-operative period already starting from the first post-operative day physiotherapy course is commenced with aim to restore full range of joint movements.

Elbow joint “mouse”. In case of trauma or illnesses part of cartilage or bone enter into joint capsule. It usually causes feeling of blocking and sharp pain while moving. Elbow joint “mouse” is treated surgically. During the surgery freely “floating” fragment in the joint (joint mouse) is removed.

Shoulder bursae are inflammation that is caused in small fluid-filled sack. Signs of inflammation are pain, swelling, limited movements and pain while moving. Inflammation is caused by overload of joint, repeated micro trauma or separate trauma of shoulder joint, as well as calcific tendinitis due to which lime crystals form in the rotator cuff, creating hole or holes and causing inflammation of the surrounding tissues of tendon.

Elbow joint bursa is inflammation that is caused in the small fluid-filled sack in shoulder joint. Inflammation usually causes pain, swelling and in certain cases limited movements of the elbow. Bursitis can be caused by trauma, infection, arthritis as well as prolonged pressure on one or both elbows, for example, for representatives of certain professions – tinkers or assemblers of cold/hot devices that have to perform part of the work on their elbows.

Arthritis of elbow joint is inflammation process in the joint that is expressed with pain and limited movements. One of the most common types of arthritis affecting elbow joint is rheumatoid arthritis. Also physical labour can cause arthritis regularly creating overload to elbow joints and traumas.

Analgesic medications, steroid injections and physical therapy are applied for the non-surgical treatment of arthritis. If this treatment is unsuccessful in reducing pain and still limited movements are observed in elbow joint, surgical treatment is necessary.

Immediate surgical treatment is necessary in case of festering arthritis (arthritis caused by infection – bacteria). Infectious arthritis can be caused by, for example, diabetes mellitus, and also regular usage of steroids (usually for people with autoimmune diseases.) Timely adequate surgical treatment of the joint promotes favourable income.

Arthrosis of the shoulder joint. Trauma, illnesses or natural ageing process can gradually damage the shoulder bone joint. Cartilage is damaged that in the joint protects two bone surfaces from direct contact and rubbing. When the cartilage deteriorates, direct contact of the bone and rubbing cause inflammation of the joint, pain and as a result limited movements.

Arthrosis is irreversible process still it is possible to limit or slow it down. Anti-inflammatory and analgesic medications are effective for treatment of arthrosis, as well as physical therapy – treatments with purpose to activate blood circulation around the damaged bone. After consulting Traumatology – Orthopaedics specialist it is possible to master set of physiotherapy exercises; regular performing of exercises allow to maintain or even improve range of movements of existing, diseased joint.

If this treatment does not allow reducing pain and still limited movements are observed in shoulder joint, surgical treatment is necessary.