The Elbow, Wrist and Hand

The elbow, wrist and hand work together to let you perform a multitude of gross motor and fine motor activities. Pain in any of these joints can hamper your ability to perform your daily activities and to pursue athletic endeavors without discomfort.

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What Causes Elbow, Wrist, and Hand Pain?

Generally, elbow pain can be attributed to wear and tear of the joint, a sports injury or inflammation of the elbow joint brought on by repetitive actions, or a trauma to the elbow joint. Tennis elbow and golfers’ elbow are the most recognized causes of elbow pain. Bursitis can also be a factor in a trauma-related elbow injury.

Hand and wrist pain is most often caused by trauma (e.g. a fall that results in a fracture) or overuse. Common injuries include carpal tunnel syndrome and arthritis.

You are most at risk for elbow, wrist and hand pain if you:

  • Perform repetitive wrist movements (e.g. typing and clerical work, manual labor that requires excessive gripping and lifting activities)
  • Are an athlete who performs repetitive motions
  • Have a recent history of a fall
  • Are over 40 years of age

Common Elbow, Wrist and Hand Conditions

Our Physical Therapists will develop a customized treatment plan to relieve your elbow, wrist or hand pain and to restore mobility. The most common injuries that are effectively treated with physical therapy are:

  • Tennis or Golfers’ Elbow
  • Nerve Injury
  • Ligamentous Injury
  • Fractures
  • Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
  • Bursitis/Arthritis

Treatment Options

Our team of Physical Therapists treats patients using evidence-based treatment techniques that speed recovery time while reducing the risk of recurrence of pain in your elbow, wrist or hand

  • Manual therapy to decrease pain, increase range of motion, and improve function
  • Therapeutic exercises to strengthen hand, arm, shoulder, and scapular muscles that will improve functional movement patterns
  • Functional exercises that are tailored to your activity level
  • Self-management education to reduce chance of recurrence

Common Elbow, Wrist, and Hand Surgeries

Some elbow and wrist/hand conditions do not respond to physical therapy alone. In these instances, surgery is required and physical therapy is a follow-up treatment strategy. The most common surgeries are:

  • Arthroscopy
  • Ligament reconstruction
  • Carpal tunnel release
  • Correction of finger deformities