Elbow Surgeon Q&A
Learn more about our specialty-trained and experienced orthopedic doctors at The Orthopedic Group, who are experts in assessing, diagnosing, and treating elbow injuries and conditions. For more information, call us today or book an appointment online, if you are seeking Orthopedic Care. We have convenient locations to serve you at Leesburg VA, Lansdowne VA, and Stone Springs VA.
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In the human body, the elbow joint is crucial for moving your hands, rotating your forearm, and bending and straightening the elbow. There are ligaments, nerves, arteries, veins, and bones in the ankle joint, which function similarly to ankles and knees.
It is possible to require elbow surgery for a number of common orthopedic conditions. Surgery may be necessary when any of these parts are damaged by injuries such as strains, fractures, tears, or diseases.
The most common cause of elbow pain is tendinitis, which occurs when tendons become inflamed or injured. Tennis elbow occurs when tendons on the outer part of the elbow joint are injured. A golfer’s elbow is an injury to the inner part of the elbow. It is also possible to develop tendonitis from overusing the elbow through other activities.
In many cases, symptoms can be managed by resting, taking medications, getting injections, or taking physical therapy. A surgical procedure, however, could be your best option for maintaining an active lifestyle, depending on the severity of your condition.
The elbow can be affected by a variety of types of arthritis. As the cartilage degenerates, it wears on the joints, causing osteoarthritis. Rheumatoid arthritis, on the other hand, is caused by inflammation, causing discomfort, and severe pain.
Symptoms can be reduced with lifestyle adjustments, but physical therapy and medication may also be required. Surgery, however, is often the best option for severe cases.
Other common conditions affecting the elbow that may require surgery include bursitis, a dislocated elbow, bone spurs, and UCL injuries. As with tendonitis and arthritis more mild forms of these conditions can usually be treated without an invasive procedure. Consulting an elbow surgeon will help determine which type of treatment is right for you.
There are various types of elbow surgeries that may be appropriate, depending on the nature of each patient’s condition.
A synovectomy can be an effective option for patients in the early stages of inflammatory arthritis who have experienced minimal cartilage damage.
Arthroscopic debridement can be an option for patients with osteoarthritis who have symptoms of minor pain and stiffness, however, it is not recommended for patients with an advanced version of the disease.
The best candidates for elbow interposition arthroplasty have osteoarthritis or post-traumatic osteoarthritis. It can also be an effective treatment for patients who are too young for joint replacement but have incurred too much damage for debridement.
Total elbow arthroplasty or replacement is not recommended for patients younger than 60 because implants tend not to last for longer than a few years but are a good option for adults with end-stage inflammatory arthritis.
There are numerous different types of elbow surgery, an elbow surgeon will determine which is best suited based on your condition, lifestyle, medical history, and age.
Given the various types of elbow surgery, the recovery time necessary varies. Many elbow surgeries have a recovery time between 6-8 weeks, however, it may take up to four months before patients are cleared to return to certain more strenuous activities. An elbow surgeon will assist patients in the rehabilitation process and brief them on the recovery time based on their specific condition and lifestyle demands.
Different elbow surgeries carry with them different success rates, however, most of them are around 80 to 90 percent successful. Many elbow surgeries carry certain risks or potential complications with them which patients will be briefed on ahead of the procedure.
An elbow surgeon will consider non-invasive options as available prior to initiating a surgical procedure however, in many cases it is the best course of action to help patients suffering from chronic conditions affecting their elbow to return to a pain-free and active life. Our staff of medical professionals at The Orthopedic Group will help determine whether surgery is right for you. We serve patients from Leesburg VA, Lansdowne VA, Stone Springs VA, Dulles, VA, Ashburn VA, Sterling VA, Aldie VA, South Riding VA, Herndon VA, Winchester VA, Reston VA, and Chantilly VA.