ZocdocAnswersHow can I stop the pain in my elbow?

Question

How can I stop the pain in my elbow?

"I'm a 19 year old body builder that plays sports avidly. For the last month or so, my elbow pain has been steadily increasing. The pain has gone from a simple sting to a sharp jolt whenever I do any kind of activity with it. The pain is unbearable at times and I honestly don't know what to do about this. I believe this might have something to do with a bench press I've done earlier in which I pressed over 200 pounds but I doubt it since I've always been able to do this. I think it might have been due to my job in construction. Should I go see a sports medicine specialist or just give it plenty of rest?

Answer

I would suggest seeing your doctor. 1 month is a long time to have this kind of pain, and it is worth getting it checked out to see what is going on. One possibility that is highly likely is that you have tendonitis of the elbow. When the tendons of the elbow are inflamed, this can lead to quite severe shooting pains, especially with exercise or heavy work, and some problems with weak grip in the hands. When the tendons that are inflamed are on the outside of the elbow, this is called tennis elbow, or lateral epicondylitis. When the tendons that are inflamed are on the inside of the elbow, this is called golfer's elbow, or medial epicondylitis. The treatment for either form of epicondylitis involves resting from the types of sports and other physical activity that provoke the discomfort. In addition to rest, anti inflammatory medications like ibuprofen or naprosyn can be very helpful. In more advanced cases, physical therapy and braces can also be helpful, as can certain stretching exercises. Your primary care doctor or a sports medicine doctor will be able to help you figure out what is going on and give you some advice about what you should do.

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

If you think you may have a medical emergency, call your doctor or (in the United States) 911 immediately. Always seek the advice of your doctor before starting or changing treatment. Medical professionals who provide responses to health-related questions are intended third party beneficiaries with certain rights under Zocdoc’s Terms of Service.