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COVID-19 update:  Our hospital is still fully open for appointments and admissions, however visitors are not permitted.

Elbow Osteoarthritis

Osteoarthritis affects more than eight million people in the UK who suffer from stiff and painful joints. Elbow osteoarthritis can cause pain and stiffness in the elbow joint, a loss of range of motion and often a grating sensation. We offer a range of treatments to help you control the symptoms associated with osteoarthritis.

Elbow osteoarthritis causes

Osteoarthritis of the elbow is caused by wear and tear from work, everyday activities or as a result of a previous injury or fracture. It occurs when cartilage in the elbow joint roughens and thins so the joint capsule thickens and tightens, causing swelling and a hot pain. It is most common in middle aged men who perform strenuous activity, people with a history of elbow fractures, or those with a family history of osteoarthritis.

Elbow osteoarthritis symptoms

Patients experience pain and stiffness in the elbow joint, a loss of range of motion and often report a grating sensation. This is a result of the damage to the normally smooth joint surface. A locking of the elbow is also a common symptom and this occurs when tiny pieces of cartilage or bone are dislodged. Swelling appears once the condition is advanced and this can increase pressure on the ulna nerve, causing a tingling in the fingers.

Elbow osteoarthritis treatment

There is no cure but treatments can help manage it and control the symptoms. Self help such as maintaining a healthy weight and dong sensible, regular exercise can help reduce the discomfort.

Massage and physiotherapy can improve the daily impact and painkillers can ease flare-ups. There are a range of surgical and non-surgical treatments including the TENS nerve stimulation machine which may alleviate symptoms in the short-term.

Severe osteoarthritis which is having an impact on work and life can be treated with surgeries – normally keyhole – to replace part or the whole of an affected joint with an artificial one, normally for the knees or hips. A skilled orthopaedic surgeon will be able to advise the best procedure to strengthen the joint, improve mobility and reduce pain.

Contact us

To ask a question, make an enquiry or book an appointment, contact our specialist team on 0207 078 3867 or elbowspecialists@hje.org.uk, the team are available between Monday – Friday 8am – 6pm and on Saturday from 9am – 3pm. Our elbow team have a dedicated and caring approach and will seek to find you the earliest appointment possible with the correct specialist for your needs.

If you do not have a GP, then we have an in-house private GP practice that you can use. Alternatively we can suggest the most appropriate course of action for you to take, given your location and individual circumstance.

Elbow Clinic

A specialist group of consultants forms our London-based Elbow Unit. Our expert team is dedicated to the diagnosis, treatment and research of elbow injuries and conditions.

A patient speaking to a receptionist

Patient information

Our Hospital is renowned for providing exemplary levels of care across more than 90 services. From orthopaedics, to urology, ENT, as well as a private GP practice and our urgent care centre, Casualty First, our services are led by some of London’s leading Consultants. For more information, and to find a service suitable for your care, find out more about the services that we offer.

Make an enquiry

If you have any questions relating to treatment options or pricing information then get in touch with us by filling out one of our contact boxes or giving us a call on 0207 078 3867.

Our Appointments Team have a dedicated and caring approach to finding you the earliest appointment possible with the best specialist.

 If you are self-paying you don’t need a referral from your GP for a consultation. You can simply refer yourself* and book an appointment.

If you have medical insurance (e.g. Bupa, Axa PPP, Aviva), you will need to contact your insurer to get authorisation for any treatment and, in most cases, you will require a referral letter from your GP.

If you do not have a GP, then we have an in-house private GP practice that you can use. Alternatively we can suggest the most appropriate course of action for you to take, given your location and individual circumstance.

*Please note – for investigations such as X-rays and MRI’s a referral will be required. However, we may be able to arrange this for you through our on-site private GP.

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