Elbow Arthroscopy Recovery

Georgia Hand, Shoulder, and Elbow

Elbow arthroscopy is a minimally invasive surgical procedure used to diagnose and treat elbow joint issues, including problems with the elbow ligaments and soft tissues surrounding it. Elbow arthroscopy involves making small incisions around the elbow joint, allowing loose cartilage or other loose pieces to be removed and the blood vessels in the area to be repaired.

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The recovery process from elbow arthroscopy can vary depending on the individual but typically entails slowly regaining elbow strength and range of motion while avoiding strenuous activities during the healing period. During recovery, it is important to understand what to expect and how to care for your elbow as you heal from this surgery.

If you have had an elbow sports injury or undergone an elbow arthroscopy procedure and have questions about the recovery process, contact us at Georgia Hand, Shoulder & Elbow. Our elbow specialists in Marietta and Atlanta, Georgia will educate you on everything you need to know about your recovery process. Call us today!

Post-Operative Care After Elbow Arthroscopy

Post-operative care after elbow arthroscopy is essential for successful recovery. It is important to relieve pain, control inflammation, and encourage a full range of motion in the joint.

Your doctor may prescribe pain medicine, such as ibuprofen or other non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), as pain control methods. Your doctor may also recommend cold compresses to reduce swelling and discomfort. You should follow your doctor’s instructions carefully when taking pain medicine. 

In the first few days after surgery, the arm should be rested and elevated as much as possible. This can help reduce swelling and pain, as well as prevent further injury or complications. If a sling has been provided to you by your doctor, it should be worn for comfort and support. 

It is essential to follow your doctor’s instructions regarding activity levels and rest periods in order to ensure a safe recovery. Your doctor may recommend avoiding certain activities, such as lifting, pushing, or pulling, that could cause strain on the elbow joint during the first few weeks after your surgery.

Your doctor may also suggest wearing an elbow brace to support the joint and relieve pressure on it during healing. You should also keep your incision area clean and dry to prevent infection. Regularly changing dressings or bandages as directed by your doctor will help with this process.

By following these post-operative care recommendations, you can help ensure a successful recovery from an elbow arthroscopy procedure.

How Long Does It Take To Recover From Elbow Arthroscopy Procedure?

Recovering from an elbow arthroscopy procedure typically takes anywhere from four to six weeks. During this time, scar tissue will form around the surgical site in the upper arm, and scarring should start to improve after about ten days. The scar will gradually fade over time, but a certain level of scarring can be expected for up to a year after surgery. 

It is common to experience some swelling, which may last for several weeks or months, depending on the complexity of the surgery and individual patient factors. You may also feel some stiffness in the elbow joint, especially as you begin moving it again during recovery.

When Can I Return to My Routine Activities After Elbow Arthroscopy Procedure?

After undergoing an elbow arthroscopy procedure, patients can typically expect to return to their routine activities within 4-6 weeks. Elbow arthroscopy typically requires a shorter recovery time when compared to shoulder and knee arthroscopy. This is because the shoulder and knee joints are among the largest and most complex joints in the body and therefore require more time for recovery than some other joints like the elbow.

Will I Need Therapy After an Elbow Arthroscopy Surgery?

Occupational therapy and rehabilitation exercises may be prescribed by your doctor following an elbow arthroscopy procedure. These exercises are designed to help improve flexibility, strength, and range of motion in the joints. Generally speaking, a therapist will begin with passive movements and then move on to active exercises and strengthening exercises.

What Should I Do if Complications Arise While I’m Recovering From Elbow Arthroscopy Procedure?

If you experience any complications while recovering from an elbow arthroscopy procedure, it is important to contact your doctor immediately. While some minor pain and swelling are expected after the procedure, if these symptoms worsen or become unbearable, there may be a more serious issue that needs to be addressed. 

Your doctor can help determine the cause of your discomfort and provide treatment recommendations accordingly. Common complications associated with elbow surgery include infection, nerve damage, scarring, poor healing, joint stiffness or instability, and decreased range of motion. 

If any of these issues arise during recovery, doctors may recommend therapy programs, alongside medications such as ibuprofen or acetaminophen, for inflammation and pain relief. In addition to rehabilitation therapy, regional nerve block injections may be used to reduce pain and increase mobility.

It is important to follow your doctor’s instructions carefully regarding treatments, medications, and recovery times. If you experience any complications while recovering from elbow arthroscopy, contact your doctor right away for assessment and treatment. With proper medical attention and care, the likelihood of a successful recovery increases significantly.

Visit Georgia Hand, Shoulder & Elbow Today

If you have undergone elbow arthroscopy surgery and have questions about your recovery process, contact us at Georgia Hand, Shoulder & Elbow. Our doctors in Marietta and Atlanta, GA can create a personalized plan tailored to your needs. 

With the proper care, you can achieve a successful recovery from your procedure and get back to living life without discomfort or limitation due to elbow stiffness or soreness. Call us today!

Occupational and physical therapy are commonly used after Dupuytren’s contracture surgery.  They can be designed to help improve joint function, increase mobility, and reduce pain post-operatively.

If you are looking for relief after Dupuytren’s contracture surgery, we have the answer. Get started on the road to recovery by contacting us today at Georgia Hand, Shoulder & Elbow. 

Learn how physical and rehabilitation therapy can help reduce your symptoms and improve your quality of life. Call one of our offices in Georgia today to schedule a consultation and get more information regarding physical therapy for Dupuytren’s contracture

What Is Dupuytren’s Contracture?

Dupuytren’s contracture is a disease that affects the skin and connective tissue in the hands. It is characterized by the thickening and swelling of the fascia, a layer of tissue that covers the tendons in the palm of the hand. This thickening can cause the fingers to bend towards the palm, making it difficult to straighten them fully. 

The disease typically develops slowly over time and can affect one or both hands. The exact cause of Dupuytren’s contracture is unknown, but it is believed to be related to genetics and aging. The thickening and swelling of the fascia can make it difficult for the tendons to move freely, leading to the characteristic bend in the fingers.

Dupuytren’s contracture can be a debilitating condition that affects daily activities, such as holding objects, making a fist, or performing fine motor tasks. It is essential to seek treatment for Dupuytren’s contracture to help preserve hand function and improve quality of life.

How Does Physical Therapy Help Dupuytren’s Contracture?

Physical therapy plays an important role in the management of Dupuytren’s contracture post-operatively. Factors such as the severity of the contracture, the overall health of the patient, and their age can influence the success of this therapy. However, it can still be a highly effective way to manage the symptoms of Dupuytren’s contracture. 

Through regular therapy sessions, patients can improve the range of motion in their affected hand, increase their strength and dexterity, and reduce the progression of the contracture. This therapy is often combined with other treatments, such as splinting and medication, making it a crucial component of a comprehensive management plan for Dupuytren’s contracture.

Rehabilitation therapy can help to restore normal movement and strength in the hands and fingers after surgery. This is an essential step in allowing full recovery from this condition.

Physical therapy can also help patients learn strategies to cope with pain or stiffness related to Dupuytren’s contracture that could arise during everyday activities. Overall, rehabilitation therapy can be an invaluable tool in helping to reduce the symptoms of Dupuytren’s contracture after surgery and restore function to the hand.

What Physical Therapy Methods Are Used After Dupuytren’s Contracture Surgery?

To help manage discomfort after Dupuytren’s Contracture surgery, a specialist will use a combination of exercises and techniques to improve the range of motion, reduce pain and stiffness, and maintain or improve the overall function of the affected hand. 

Some of the physical therapy exercises used after Dupuytren’s Contracture surgery include:

  • Active range of motion (AROM) exercises: This exercise involves moving the affected fingers as much as possible with assistance from another person or a device, such as a rubber band. The goal is to maintain flexibility and prevent further progression of the contracture. 
  • Passive Range Of Motion (PROM) exercises: This involves stretching the contracted joint through gentle movements done by another person. This type of exercise is used to increase flexibility and decrease pain. 
  • Isometric exercises: This type of exercise involves applying pressure against the affected joint without movement, which helps to stretch and strengthen the surrounding muscles. It can be done with or without assistance from another person.
  • Grip-strengthening exercises: These exercises involve squeezing a rubber ball or other soft object in order to strengthen the affected hand muscles and improve grip strength. This will help maintain the function of the fingers and may help prevent further progression of the condition.

What Happens if I Stop Physical Therapy Post-Opertatively?

If someone stops physical therapy after their Dupuytren’s contracture surgery, the effects could be detrimental to their health. Pain can increase because muscles, tendons, and other tissues have not been stretched in the proper way. Without regular stretching and exercise, the areas of contracture may become tighter and more limited in the range of motion.

Call Us Today!

If you have Dupuytren’s contracture and will soon be addressing your discomfort with surgery, call Georgia Hand, Shoulder & Elbow in Marietta or Atlanta, GA today to learn about which kind of therapy is the right choice for you! 

Our experienced healthcare professionals offer specialized treatment plans to meet the individual needs of each patient. From occupational therapy to several rehabilitation therapy methods, our team will create a regimen that works best for you.

Medically reviewed by

Randall Alexander, MD

Hand & Orthopaedic Surgeon

Hand & Orthopaedic Surgeon

Hand & Plastic Surgeon

Hand & Orthopaedic Surgeon

Hand & Orthopaedic Surgeon

Hand & Orthopaedic Surgeon

Hand & Orthopaedic Surgeon

Hand & Orthopaedic Surgeon