Beauty Fitness and Dermatology

Elbow Fracture Epicondyle - Lateral and Medial Epicondyle

Elbow Fracture Epicondyle is a complete or incomplete break in the epicondyle of the humerus (the large bone in the arm between the elbow and shoulder). The epicondyle is located on the outside of the humerus at its lower end and forms a part of the elbow joint. This fracture is often accompanied by elbow dislocation.

Places where Elbow Fracture Epicondyle occurs

Epicondyle of the humerus. Elbow joint. Soft tissue around the fracture site, including nerves, tendons, ligaments, joint membranes and blood vessels.

Causes, Signs and Symptoms of Elbow Fracture Epicondyle

Direct blow or indirect stress to the elbow. Indirect stress may be caused by twisting or violent muscle contraction.

  • Visible deformity if the fracture is complete and the bone fragments separate enough to distort normal arm contours.
  • Tenderness to the touch.
  • Severe elbow pain at the time of injury.
  • Swelling of soft tissue around the fracture.
  • Numbness and coldness in the hand and lower arm if the blood supply is impaired.

Complications in Elbow Fracture Epicondyle

Prolonged healing time if activity is resumed too soon. Proneness to repeated elbow injury. Unstable or arthritic elbow following repeated injury. Shock. Pressure on or injury to nearby nerves, ligaments, tendons, muscles, blood vessels or connective tissues. Delayed union or non-union of the fracture. Impaired blood supply to the fracture site. Avascular necrosis (death of bone cells) due to interruption of the blood supply. Arrest of normal bone growth in children. Infection in open fractures (skin broken over fracture site), or at the incision if surgical setting was necessary. Shortening of the injured bones.

Treatment, Medication and Care for Elbow Fracture Epicondyle

For First aid, use instructions for R.I.C.E., the first letters of REST, ICE, COMPRESSION and ELEVATION. The doctor will set the broken bones with surgery or, if possible, without. The setting lines up the broken bones as close to their normal position as possible. Manipulation should be done as soon as possible after injury. Six or more hours after the fracture, bleeding and displacement of body fluids may lead to shock. Also, many tissues lose their elasticity and become difficult to return to a normal position. Keep the person warm with blankets to decrease the possibility of shock. Cut away clothing, if possible, but don't move the injured elbow to do so.

General anesthesia, local anesthesia or muscle relaxants to make bone manipulation and fixation of bone fragments possible. Narcotic or synthetic narcotic pain relievers for severe pain. Stool softeners to prevent constipation due to inactivity. Acetaminophen for mild pain.

  • After the cast or splints are removed, use frequent ice massage. Fill a large Styrofoam cup with water and freeze. Tear a small amount of foam from the top so ice protrudes. Massage firmly over the injured area in a circle about the size of a baseball. Do this for 15 minutes at a time, 3 or 4 times a day.
  • Apply heat instead of ice, if it feels better. Use heat lamps, hot soaks, hot showers, heating pads, or heat liniments and ointments.
  • Immobilization will be necessary, usually with plaster splints around the injured area to immobilize the elbow and wrist.
  • After 48 hours, localized heat promotes healing by increasing blood circulation in the injured area. Use a heat lamp or a heating pad for 30 minutes at a time so heat can penetrate the cast or splints.
  • Take whirlpool treatments, if available.

Dietary Cure for Elbow Fracture Epicondyle

Drink only water before manipulation or surgery to correct the dislocation. Solid food in your stomach makes vomiting under general anesthesia more hazardous. During recovery, eat a well-balanced diet that includes extra protein, such as meat, fish, poultry, cheese, milk and eggs. Increase fiber and fluid intake to prevent constipation that may result from decreased activity.

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