Elbow hyperextension injury occurs when the elbow is bent back the wrong way. This type of injury will occur more frequently in contact sports. The elbow pain is caused when the elbow is forced to bend the wrong way or hyperextend causing damage to the ligaments and structures of the elbow.
This injury happens when there is a direct blow to the elbow.
Immediately following the injury, a cold compress can be applied to the area to treat the associated pain and swelling. An over the counter pain reliever can also be taken for pain. It is best to avoid using the injured arm until it has had time to heal. Additionally, patients might consider using a brace or bandage to help limit mobility and speed up the healing process. Once the injury starts to heal, typically within two weeks of the accident, the patient may be able to start light rehabilitation therapy, using gripping and flexing exercises to help regain strength in the joint and surrounding tissue.
In some cases, however, the pain and swelling associated with a hyperextension injury to the elbow may be so severe that surgical treatment may be necessary to alleviate the problem. In particular, if damage to the ligaments or tendons of the elbow is suspected, it is best to consult a doctor before trying to treat the injury at home.
If a doctor determines that surgical treatment is the best course of action for elbow hyperextension, there are a number of possibilities. Primarily, surgical treatment of hyperextension injuries to the elbow involves repairing any damage to the tendons or ligaments around the elbow. Surgery may involve grafting tissue from other parts of the body to the elbow area, or repairing pinched nerves or obstructed arteries, in the case or a severe injury.