/ elbow compartment syndrome

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lorentz - on 03 Dec 2012

Has anyone had any experience of compartment syndrome of the elbow. Have been doing some research and it seems to match my symptoms exactly. Have done a search on here and it's brought up some forearm stuff. I have localised swelling and soreness on pretty much the slightest exertion just below the elbow at the back of the forearm. Have struggled with tennis elbow since March, but that finally seems to be improving. However, my elbow is very prone to strain/sprain and swelling. Also the joint is clicking a lot more than it ever used to, so am wondering if there's a mis-alignment/slight dislocation even.

Any previous experiences gratefully received. Have seen an orthopaedic surgeon who diagnosed the tennis elbow and said to leave it to heal (which it seems to be doing in fairness.). Am going back to see him december/january, and am keen to get the other symptoms I'm suffering addressed or at least diagnosed. I'm struggling with work as I do a lot of lifting in my job, and haven't been able to climb since May now. Really starting to get me down a bit!

Cheers in advance

lorentz - on 03 Dec 2012
In reply to lorentz:

I should add that I suspect this is exercise induced compartment syndrome, but can't remember any key moment when something "went" in my elbow. Any experiences shared, treatment courses, knowledge of surgery, healing times gratefully received. Really after experience from fellow climbers who understand the importance of fully functioning elbows to the game.

Thanks for reading.
lorentz - on 05 Dec 2012
In reply to lorentz:

Quiet in here! Okay. Less specific. Anyone had any experience with compartment syndrome at all?
chers - on 05 Dec 2012
In reply to lorentz: Sorry, no but seem to have the start of tennis elbow. Have you had any specific exercises to treat it?
lorentz - on 05 Dec 2012
In reply to chers:

My tennis elbow has been a whole other saga. Found a theraband flexbar (off amazon about £25) very useful, but would warn against overdoing it. There are videos up om youtube for correct method of use. See a physio for some massage and other appropriate stretches. A search on here brings up some really good stuff regarding eccentric stretching using a dumbell with one mall weight on one end for golfers elbow which puts a great stretch into the tendon if used in an inward direction. Had a cortisone injection that did nothing for it unfortunately, and some acupuncture, which has really helped despite my initial scepticism! As the orthpaedic consultant said to me however, tennis elbow takes time and rest. Essentially it's (in my case age -37- and overuse-related) microtears lengthwise along the tendonfibres/tendonsheaf causing swelling aggravation and pain.i I suspect if you're like me, that's not what yoyu want to hear, but I'd really advise doing anything that aggravates or worsens it. My tennis elbow is clearing up, now that this other (possibly related?) injury has put the kaibosh on even the most gentle climbing. Good luck with it!
combatrock on 18 Dec 2012
In reply to lorentz: no experience of elbow problems, but currently suffering from possible compartment syndrome in my forearm (in the process of getting it sorted). You have my sympathy! get another opinion - gp, physio etc. push the gp for a referal to physio/osteo as well. buy the book 'one move too many' - a recent purchase that has really helped me understand the forces at work when climbing and how to make things better for myself with a revised training plan etc. sorry i can't be of more help!
GeoffRadcliffe - on 18 Dec 2012
In reply to lorentz: I have had compartment syndrone in my legs when I was doing a lot of running. It was bad. My legs hurt even when walking. I stopped running for 6 weeks and waited for the muscles to get smaller. This worked provided I didn't do a lot of running.

I also know a climber who had it in his forearms. He had several operations to open up the compartments to allow room for his muscles.

There have been several famous runners that also had the syndrome in their legs such as Steve Cram.

Apart from an operation it can be treated by steroidal drugs. I have never heard of anyone having compartment syndrome in their elbow and am mystified as to how you could even get it there? The condition is due to muscles outgrowing the compartments they are in.

I am curious as to why you are asking about compartment syndrom which is very different to tennis elbow which is very common and very treatable.


chers - on 24 Dec 2012
In reply to lorentz: A trip to the docs is planned for after xmas and suggestion he sends me for physio and acupuncture (worked wonders on my shoulder tendonitus)
am wondering if I'm prone to this type of injury...right shoulder, then left shoulder, now right elbow. Maybe some of us are not "built" to climb?

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