ZocdocAnswersWhat is wrong with my arm and how long should it take to heal?

Question

What is wrong with my arm and how long should it take to heal?

So I was playing in my basketball game and I had my right arm up in a 90 degree angle with my elbow facing backwards. Then a girl rammed into me and knocked my elbow backwards. Since then on the inside of my elbow there is a light bruise, it is swollen and it seems to be a little but dis shaped. Also when I touch the inside of my shoulder it is tender and hurts. In addition to both if these things, my hand has been quite numb and tingly since the incident. And as well as that, along the bottom of my forearm it is numb and tingly and there is a horrible pain. Finally, there has been sharp pains shooting up my shoulder and forearm

Answer

It sounds like you had a traumatic injury to your arm that is causing persistent symptoms of pain along with new neurologic symptoms, and you should see a doctor as soon as possible to make sure you don't have a serious injury. The bruising and tenderness that you are describe may simply represent damage to the soft tissue and blood vessels of the arm that should improve with time, ibuprofen and ice packs. However, if you are developing tingling and numbness of your hand and arm I am concerned that you may have damaged one of the nerves that runs through the arm or the shoulder (called the brachial plexus). If you have a lot of pain in any of the bones you may have fractured one of the bones in your arm, and if you are having difficulty moving your shoulder or your elbow you could have dislocated these joints. It does sound like you are having enough symptoms that you should go see a doctor as soon as possible, especially if you hand becomes cold, numb or paralyzed. They can examine your arm, determine how severe the injury is, and whether you need any further x-rays or diagnostic testing.

This answer is for general informational purposes only and is not a substitute for professional medical advice.

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