When Elbow Surgery Becomes Elbow Replacement

Some of you may have just read my prior post on knee pain and its discontents. This one focuses on its upper body analog, the elbow, and the many ways that pain, inflammation and injury can impede the body’s natural ability to bend and use this major joint.

Elbow surgery can be as minor as a tendon repair or as major as a full replacement. Understanding when and why each procedure is indicated is the role of your orthopedic specialist, who will take you through a range of diagnostic exercises to determine the best course of treatment.

If the joint requires replacing, the procedure can be lengthy and the recovery difficult, but there is an upside: you should regain some measure of freedom and mobility once again.

Some people can start to use their new elbow as soon as 12 weeks after surgery. Complete recovery can take up to a year. There will be limits to how much weight you can lift. Lifting too heavy of a load can break the replacement elbow or loosen the parts. Talk to your doctor or nurse about your limitations.

If you have lived with impaired movement or chronic elbow pain for too long and want to speak with a team of orthopedic surgeons in San Diego, please call or write my practice here today.

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