People across the world watched in horror when 20-year old Armenian weightlifter Andranik Karapetyan suffered a terrible elbow injury at the Rio Olympics. The injury, which occurred during his second attempt to lift 195kg, shattered his dreams of winning gold in the men’s 77-kilogram event. Different types of sports injuries occur during the Olympics, but such severe elbow injuries are rare.
Elbow pain is a common problem among those who perform any type of weightlifting or pushups on a regular basis. Golfer’s elbow and tennis elbow, both tendon-related injuries, cause pain in the elbow and forearm. For instance, overextending the elbow when lowering a dumbbell can cause injury and severe joint pain. Karapetyan’s case is one of extreme hyperextension where the ligaments, bones and other structures of the elbow are seriously damaged.
However, as we all know tendinitis of the elbow is not just limited to sporting activity. It can be the result of overuse or repetitive motion from desk jobs. Computer elbow, a classic example of a work-related repetitive stress injury, occurs due to overuse and strained muscles and tendons in the arm.
Symptoms of elbow injury include:
- Pain and tenderness on the inside of the joint
- Pain along the interior of the forearm
- Weakness in the hand and wrist
- Tingling or numbness in the fingers
- Stiffness or immobility of the affected elbow
Surgery will be required only for very severe hyperextension injuries of the elbow. Common elbow pain, whether acute or chronic, can be effectively treated with non-invasive modalities. In fact, sports medicine specialists in leading multispecialty health care centers in Brooklyn, New York provide customized treatment plans that combine a variety of options – from pain injections and medications to physical therapy, chiropractic care and more. Treatment is focused on helping patients manage pain and regain strength and mobility to quickly return to their active lifestyle.