The elbow joint acts as a type of hinge, with three bones meeting at the elbow. The ends of the bones are coated in smooth joint cartilage, and as a result of wear-and-tear, trauma or inflammatory arthritis, this cartilage can get worn away and expose the underlying bone. Bone spurs can form and loose pieces of bone and cartilage can get caught within the elbow. Overall, this leads to pain, stiffness, and loss of function.
Elbow arthritis can be managed by avoiding or modifying the activities which provoke symptoms, pain relief medication, physiotherapy, and selective injections with local anaesthetic and corticosteroid.
If non-operative management is unsuccessful and you are an appropriate candidate, Dr Yu may recommend surgery for you. The type of operation will depend on you and your situation, but may be a keyhole (arthroscopic) operation, or require an incision to clean out (debride) the joint. In select cases, you could be a candidate for an elbow replacement operation where some or all of the joint surfaces are replaced with surgical implants.
Do you have an elbow problem?
Contact our team to find out more.