Physical Rehabilitation Medicine/Elbow Clicking

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Question
Elbow Pain
Elbow Pain  
Hello, I want to thank you for allowing people like myself to ask you questions relating to your expertise.

I started going to the gym and I noticed a clicking sound in my left elbow. Here is a link to a video on youtube of what it sounds and looks like exactly.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6zZmswABLvE

I ignored it initially but I kept doing my exercises. After a few workouts I finally started to feel some pain in my forearm. If I was standing with my arms to my side the pain would be on my left forearm, on the farther part of my body, between the ulna and the radius. About an inch down from my elbow joint.

When I'm in the gym I can't do more than 75 lbs on the bench press because the clicking in the elbow is bothering me too much. I know I have the potential to do much more but I wont be able to progress on the chest press with this problem.

This has been bothering me for a while. I went to the doctor but he said I didn't have anything. If you know what it is off the top of your head could you tell me what this could be? Or what kind of doctor should I go to? Any advice would be greatly appreciated. Thank you for your time.

Answer
This could be a few different things.  

1.  Torn common extensor tendon or lateral epicondylitis.  This refers to a complex of tendons that extend the wrist/digits.  If you have a partial tear this may be a cause for clicking.

2.  Snapping triceps.  This isn't common but could be it.  If the triceps is torn sometimes it will cause snapping.

3.  Radial head arthritis.  Likely not the cause but more common than #2.

What I would do if I were you is go see a board certified hand surgeon.  You can find one near you at www.assh.org.

Good luck and lay off the weights until you find out what's going on.

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Brian Neville, OTR/L, CWCE

Expertise

I can answer questions about both conservative and post-operative rehabilitation for UPPER extremity injuries. These include but are not limited to: fractures, tendon repairs, tendon transfers, nerve repairs, lacerations, tenolysis procedures, TFCC injuries, repetitive motion disorders, reconstructive procedures. I have an advanced knowledge of UPPER extremity anatomy and industrial rehabilitation. I have extensive splinting skills for injuries to the upper extremity. Although not a physician or a surgeon I have worked closely with world renowned upper extremity specialists for over 10 years. I can give general information on what some of the most common upper extremity surgeries involve. I can reference those procedures as well. PLEASE DON'T ASK ME QUESTIONS ABOUT ANYTHING OTHER THAN THE NECK, SHOULDER, ARM/HAND. I'M NOT QUALIFIED AND KNOW ABSOLUTELY ZERO ABOUT BACKS/HIPS/KNEES/ANKLES/ETC. THANK YOU!!!

Experience

10+ years working closely with orthopedic and hand surgeons and their patients. I have treated patients with small lacerations to major reconstructive procedures. My knowledge base includes both conservative and post-operative rehab protocols and care for upper extremity injuries. I have treated patients all the way from day 1 post-op to return-to-work status.

Organizations
Kentucky Occupational Therapy Association American Society of Hand Therapy National Nurses in Business Association Roy Matheson and Associates

Publications
RSD article

Education/Credentials
Occupational Therapist former Certified Hand Therapist (license currently inactive) Deep Physical Agent Modalities Instructor Certified Work Capacity Evaluator

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