What is Elbow Arthritis?
Shoulder arthritis is a condition that results in pain and loss of motion and function in the shoulder as a result of degeneration of the cartilage and other structures of the shoulder.
How is elbow arthritis diagnosed?
History, physical examination, and x-rays are the primary means of diagnosis of elbow arthritis. Occasionally, a CT scan or an MRI is needed to confirm the diagnosis or to help select the best treatment. Patients with elbow arthritis often have pain, weakness, and/or loss of motion in the affected joint.
How is elbow arthritis treated?
Nonsurgical treatment: The first steps of treating arthritis are always non-operative. Options include physical or occupational therapy, activity modification, and anti- inflammatory medications. Injections of medication into the elbow joint can also be very helpful in reducing arthritis symptoms.
Surgical treatment: When nonoperative treatment fails, joint modification or replacement surgery can be very effective for treating elbow arthritis. For patients loss of motion but only minimal pain, release of the elbow capsule can restore motion. For higher demand patients, interposition grafting of the elbow can reduce pain and increase motion. Elbow replacements have advanced a great deal in recent years and are a good option for patients who have exhausted other means of treatment and do not partake in strenuous activity. Dr. Rose performs the following types of elbow surgeries for arthritis:
- Elbow Capsular Release (open or arthroscopic)
- Elbow Interposition Arthroplasty
- Total Elbow Arthroplasty
- Elbow Arthrodesis or Fusion
Which treatment should I select?
Each patient requires individual assessment of their symptoms prior to deciding the optimal treatment. Dr. Rose has experience with all the above techniques and can provide an assessment and explanation of the options available to you. Please contact us to schedule an appointment.