How to treat arthritis of the elbow: causes and symptoms of inflammation of the elbow

Characteristic symptoms and holistic treatment of arthritis of the elbow joint

Arthritis of the elbow joint represents the development of inflammation in the joints moving bones of the elbow. It strikes preselective, and brachioradialis radioulnar joints.

The protective function of the joints of the elbow bones perform fascia with articular exudate and strengthens ligaments.

Anatomy and function of the joint of the elbow

The joint of the elbow is the connection of three bones: the upper ends of the radius and ulna, and the lower end of the humerus. Of these compounds formed a complex joint, which connects the proximal radioulnar, the brachioradialis and preselective joint.

This anatomical structure provides flexion and elbow extension as well as rotation of the forearm. All the bones are in the so-called capsule, which also includes supporting elements in the radial and ulnar collateral ligaments.

The capsule itself is fixed on the edge of the glenoid plane. Inside her is the coronoid fossa and fovea of the bone of the elbow. The holes are curves of the synovial capsule, which, when the flexion of the elbow migrate to the coronoid process, and the straightening in the elbow.

Why arthritis affects the elbow?

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Elbow arthritis can occur for the following reasons:

  • trauma;
  • the presence of infectious lesions;
  • the presence of autoimmune diseases;
  • abnormal metabolism;
  • contusion elbow;
  • the development of tumors of malignant nature.
  • eating disorders and poisoning;
  • great exercise.

Characteristics of the clinical picture

The main symptom of arthritis is pain in the elbow joint region, having a different nature and frequency of occurrence (dependent on the factor that provoked the manifestation of inflammation). In the course of the inflammatory process observed General and local signs. Local symptoms include:

  • swelling of the soft tissues around the joint;
  • pain in the joint;
  • the increased skin temperature in the area of inflammation;
  • the decrease of range of motion in the joint;
  • swelling of the skin in the projection of the joint.
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Common symptoms manifested by malaise, body weakness, headache, nausea and fever. Sometimes there specific symptoms of the disease (development of septic lesions, cachexia, etc.).

Very often in the inflammatory process involved the nerves. Because of this, can develop neuritis, which complete symptomatic picture of the arthritis.

Diagnostic criteria

Diagnosis of arthritis of the elbow begins with a General examination of the patient and preparation of the clinical picture. During the inspection it turns out the cause of the inflammatory process (a strong blow, dislocation, etc.). To clarify the stage of severity of inflammation MRI, CT scan or radiography. In some cases, biopsy of the synovial membrane.

With ultrasound you can determine the amount of fluid in the joint. This method is used only when it is not possible to set the location of the inflammatory process.

To complete the diagnostic picture is performed in lateral and frontal x-ray of elbow and General analysis of blood (important for detection of inflammatory disease).

Traditional and folk methods of treatment

Traditional treatment of arthritis of the elbow joint consists of a whole complex of methods, among which are: treatment drugs, physiotherapy, surgery and diet.

Drug therapy

To stop inflammation and eliminate pain, prescribed non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs. Mostly it is tablets containing acetylsalicylic acid and Diclofenac ointment.

If necessary, additionally appointed Nimesil, Indomethacin and Piroxicam. These tools should be used with caution, as they adversely affect the liver and gastrointestinal tract.

To reduce inflammation you can use steroid drugs: Detralex, Hydrocortisone and Prednisone. These drugs are used in tablets and ointments.

To restore cartilage chondro assigned, which include chondroitin sulfate and glucosamine.

To speed up the metabolic reactions and hemodynamic applied Nikofleks, Menovazin and Bischofite. This effect is achieved due to the dilution effect of the active components included in composition of drugs, when applied to the skin.

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Physiotherapeutic measures

The use of physiotherapy in the early stages of arthritis helps to eliminate lumps formed near the elbow. The essence of this procedure is the use of exercises, treatment, mud baths, exercise and other things.

This method of therapy should be administered only by a physician. Its independent use without medical prescriptions is not recommended. After the therapeutic course is chosen based on the extent of the disease and the individual patient. This treatment has a number of specific contraindications:

  • continuous high blood pressure;
  • disorders in the respiratory system;
  • disposition to hemorrhage;
  • the state of pregnancy.


Surgery is used in the most advanced state when treatment is elbow drugs have not helped. In most cases the surgery can be performed for septic arthritis. The indication for operations is to move the patient’s joint in the stage of deformation. Among surgical methods of treatment most often used is the following:

  • the creation of joint conditions of immobility (fusion);
  • joint replacement (arthroplasty);
  • Troubleshooting processes on the ulna (arthroscopy);
  • removing part of the bone to reduce reliance on the joint (osteotomy);
  • full or fragmented, the elimination of the joint (resection).

Popular recipes

Traditional treatment of arthritis of the elbow joint can be supplemented with folk remedies:

  1. The use of propolis. Preparing an ointment for rubbing the elbow. For its preparation it is necessary to dissolve in a water bath 50 grams of propolis and 50 g of sunflower oil. The prepared mortar is applied on the affected joint at night and lasts until morning.
  2. Treatment with honey. For mobility of the elbow joint and removing the swelling used a honey massage. Liquid honey should be applied on a night out on the limb and massage for fifteen minutes. The treated area need to wrap a scarf and leave until morning. Honey massage should be done every day until the swelling goes down.
  3. Treatment compresses. The most effective way is blue clay. To prepare the compress, you need to dilute clay with warm water until the consistency of thick cream. The pitch of this mixture is laid on the gauze and wraps around the elbow. The compress should be kept for about thirty minutes. The multiplicity of its application is three times a day for one week. It is worth remembering that for every new pack you need to apply new clay.
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First of all, doctors do not recommend to patients with arthritis of the elbow, to lead a very active lifestyle. Physical activity should be moderate. It is desirable to exclude active sports. The doctor is obliged individually to prescribe a set of exercises that he would need to perform to maintain shape.

Effects and prevention

Delayed treatment of arthritis of the elbow can cause joint contracture. It’s an arbitrary fixation of the hand in a certain position, which is scarring of the soft tissues surrounding the affected area. Another negative consequence resulting from untreated arthritis of the elbow – phlegmon, manifested in the form of an inflammation of periarticular bags.

To prevent development of the disease and its complications should perform the following preventative measures:

  • observance of proper nutrition;
  • moderate physical activity;
  • habitually, the special therapeutic exercises;
  • support healthy weight.

There are additional preventive measures (special diet, etc.), which experts recommend for each patient individually, depending on its condition.