Olecranon bursitis/student's elbow
Student's elbow, also known as olecranon bursitis of the elbow joint, is characteristic by gradually increasing pain when touched or when involving pressure on the back side of the elbow joint. Unpleasant stiffness is restricting the affected person during movement, which makes moving uncomfortable. Strong swelling in the elbow is also typical, in case of infection the skin will turn red, the temperature in the area of the inflammation is higher
Bursa is a fluid-filled sac, which is forming from the subcutaneous connective tissues in the areas of the mechanical burdening. In areas where tendons and muscles go through the cartilaginous or bony foundations. There are two types of bursae, subcutaneous bursa and tendinous bursa, the back side of the elbow joint has a tendon attached to it. Its function is to lower pressure and friction in the given area and help the joint to move smoothly. Bursitis is a condition during which the fluid-filled sac get inflammed. The area of the elbow is usually affected by falling down on the elbow joint, or by long lasting mechanical irritation such as resting on the elbows, or when lifting objects above the head. Among other causes can be rheumatoid arthritis or diabetes. Among other risk factors are also age and certain activities during which we put more pressure on the bursae, such activities can be gardening, painting or playing on a musical instrument, etc.
The treatment usually involves peaceful regime, cold compress and medication against pain. If the bursitis is caused by incfection, the doctor will prescribe you antibiotics, knee puncture and laboratory examinations are performed in order to exclude chronic joint causes (rheumatoid arthritis, gout). It is also ideal to tightly bandage the joint. Another option is to apply through injection corticoids, which will relieve you from pain, and have anti-inflammatory effects, but from a long term point of view, corticoids weaken the joint structures, which loose their strength.
In rehabilitation you can choose application of the focused shock wave, which has an anti-inflammatory effect and lowers the swelling of the joint. After that you can also decide for treatment with radial shock wave, which relieves the painful muscles of the arm and forearm. If your condition is acute and the joint is swelling a lot, you can apply kinesio tape in order to support the lymphatic drainage. And for lowering the problems, it is ideal to start with physiotherapy, where we focus on strengthening the muscles in the area of the affected joint, as well as starting with preventive measures, so that we would avoid the problems in the future.