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Elbow & Wrist Pain

Elbow & Wrist Pain

Do you suffer from arm pain? Arm pain may develop from abnormalities or injury to the bones, skin, nerves, joints, or blood vessels.

Natural wear and tear, overuse, trauma, or underlying conditions can also cause arm pain. Any part of the arm may be affected, including the lower arm, upper arm, joints, or shoulder. You may experience pain for short-term or long-term, depending on the cause and severity. Arm pain may be described as mild to severe, and can occur in one or both arms. Depending upon the cause of your arm pain, you may experience discomfort while you are active or while you are at rest.

Be aware that the cause of arm pain can be life-threatening if it is associated with the pain of a heart attack. Heart attack pain can radiate into the arm or jaw. Seek medical help immediately if you suspect you may be having a heart attack.

If you feel acute or chronic pain in one or both arms, there are things you can do to help reduce your discomfort. If you have severe or long-lasting arm pain, it can have a negative impact on your quality of life.

Often, arm pain is caused by inflammation (swelling) of tissues. Swelling may be a symptom of disease or injury. Arm pain can be caused by a number of conditions or injuries. The first step in treating arm pain is to get an accurate diagnosis of the cause of your symptoms. Based on your diagnosis, you and your doctor or pain specialist can determine your best treatment options.

At Dr. Sarojini, we can help diagnose the cause of your arm pain. We offer a range of therapies to treat your pain symptoms. Our goal is to get you back to your normal activities. Contact us to set up an appointment with one of our pain specialists.

Are you Suffering from Elbow & Wrist Pain?

Causes of Arm Pain

What can cause chronic arm pain and how can you find relief? The answer depends on the underlying condition.

Causes of severe arm pain can include conditions, such as:

  • Exercise or overuse (muscle aches)
  • Repetitive joint use (bursitis or joint inflammation)
  • Bone fractures
  • Joint dislocations
  • Peripheral vascular disease
  • Muscle, ligament or tendon strains (tendinitis) or sprains
  • Fibromyalgia
  • Skeletal structure irregularities
  • Arthritis
  • Cardiac disorders or heart attack (angina)
  • Angina pectoris that radiates to the arm
  • Nerve damage
  • Spine conditions such as cervical disk herniation
  • Diabetic neuropathy
  • Osteoporosis
  • Infection
  • Carpal tunnel syndrome
  • Rotator cuff injury

It is important that you find out what causes your arms to ache, as there are many reasons for arm pain. At Dr. Sarojini, we can help diagnose the cause to help you find relief.

Arm Pain Symptoms and Diagnosis

Be sure to inform your doctor of all your symptoms.

Arm pain symptoms may include:

  • Pain in the wrist, elbow or shoulder
  • Arm weakness
  • Pain in one or both arms
  • Upper arm pain
  • Sudden arm pain in the right arm
  • Redness or discoloration of the skin on the arm
  • Swelling of the arm, wrist, or elbow
  • Stiffness in the joints
  • Arm skin that is warm to the touch
  • Itching or throbbing skin
  • Pain that worsens when exercising
  • Numbness or tingling
  • Muscle pain / muscle aches
  • Tenderness
  • Reduced range of motion
  • Muscle cramps / sore arm

To diagnose the cause of your pain, your doctor will ask you questions about your health and family history, and do a physical examination. Other tests that can help diagnose the source of your pain include X-rays, MRI scan, CT scan, EMG/Nerve conduction study and blood tests. It is important that your condition is properly diagnosed so that you can receive the most effective treatment.

How to Treat Arm Pain

How can you ease the discomfort of arm pain symptoms? Your treatment options depend on the underlying cause and severity of your arm pain.

Treatment may start with conservative therapies, such as over-the-counter aspirin, acetaminophen or ibuprofen. These nonprescription medications can be effective for certain types of arm pain when taken according to instructions. You may also consider home care such as drinking plenty of water to reduce muscle cramps. Stretching and massage can help. You may also try using heating or cold packs, taking warm baths or showers, and resting your arms. Elevate your arm(s) when you lie down. Compression bandaging can help reduce swelling.

The pain management specialists at Dr. Sarojini may also recommend the following interventional pain therapies to reduce your arm pain:

  • Prescription medications / medication management
  • Topical agents (creams)
  • Injections such as steroid medications
  • Spinal Cord Stimulator
  • Physical therapy (can include exercises, heat and cold therapy, and electrical nerve stimulation-TENS unit)

Alternative treatments such as acupuncture, chiropractic adjustments and/or massage

When Further Arm Pain Treatment is Required

Based on the underlying condition, further treatments may be required. If there is something that can be addressed by another type of specialist, we will refer you to the appropriate specialty doctor.

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