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Elbow Injury - Not Tennis Elbow - What is it? - It really hurts
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An_244645 posted:
I noticed this a couple weeks ago. I noticed it shortly after I woke up, so I assumed I just slept funny and it'd probably go away. Embarrassingly, I still think this is something I probably did in my sleep…but regardless, it's still affecting me every day.


When I try to hold my arm out straight, or rotate my elbow to the left from any position, I can't. Well, I probably could if I were able to ignore the extremely sharp pain in my elbow. There is no position I can put my arm, and press from the outside, to create any pain (that I have found — but I've tried a lot). If I extend my forearm, and my palm is facing downward, it's comfortable. If I start to rotate my forearm so that my palm is facing upward, I get an extremely sharp pain that feels like it's directly underneath the ball of my elbow. If I try to extend my forearm with my palm facing upwards, I can only get my palm about perpendicular to flat. When my arm is bent, turning my wrist any more than a few degrees in either direction causes the pain in my elbow. The best way of describing this pain, is that it's the same feeling as putting weight on a broken bone…but if it were broken, I'm sure I'd be able to feel it from the outside and it would probably hurt all the time, not just when I move it…right?


I've tried all sorts of stretches and exercises, and also used a heating pad for about a half hour every night before bed since this started. I've tried icing it some, too…but not as consistently. There's no warmth, redness or swelling. It really hurts, but not all the time; just when I try to rotate my arm. I keep dropping and breaking things, because I'll go to carry them normally; then accidentally rotate my arm without realizing it, and it makes me jerk so sharply that one of my dinners ended up on the ceiling.


I am 30 years old, female and exercise regularly. I use hand weights, do pull-ups, push-ups and other things with my arms as part of my regular workout. Although I haven't been able to do some things at all, I've experimented with different ways of using hand weights, and although I can do some at an angle that doesn't hurt, my strength is greatly reduced. I didn't notice "tweaking" anything during my workout the day before this problem arose. I've also tried squeezing a soft ball in my hand (like the kind they tell you to squeeze when you give blood?), but I can't squeeze it very hard at all, it hurts, and doesn't seem to help.


The only pain issues I've ever had were a few broken bones throughout my life. I most recently broke my left wrist at age 25 or 26, but no pain in my arm since it healed. I've never broken my left arm.


I would appreciate any information you could give me. I'd rather not physically go to a doctor, but if I need to, I will. If I do need to go, maybe you could provide some good questions to ask? They always talk so fast and talk right over me...I don't even realize until after I've left they didn't answer my questions at all.


Thank you.
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Haylen_WebMD_Staff responded:
Since a diagnosis can't be made online, it sounds like it's time to go see a doctor. Daily pain is not good and you could be making it worse with activity.

Make sure to write down any questions you have and make sure your doctor addresses each one. Ask for a referral to a physical therapist who specializes in these types of injuries.

Haylen


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