The elbow joint connects the humerus (upper arm bone) to the ulna and radius (forearm bones). The ulna and radius articulate with each other within the elbow joint capsule. The joint is spanned by a number of muscles and tendons which flex and extend the elbow as well as the hand and fingers. Among these are the common extensor and flexor tendons of the forearm which originate at the lateral and medial condyles of the humerus. The radial collateral and ulnar collateral ligaments (RCL and UCL) hold the joint snuggly together and in proper alignment. Let’s take a look at some of the conditions that can be treated with regenerative medicine therapy right here in Ventura County. This list is by no means exhaustive, so if you have a different problem with your elbow, then please contact us to review whether PRP or stem cell treatment could benefit you in any way.
Osteoarthritis (OA) of the elbow is a degenerative condition caused by normal wear and tear and tends to increase with age. Traumatic injuries, such as those due to accidents and work or sports injuries can accelerate joint degeneration and lead to premature OA in younger people. It is very common for athletes and those with particularly physically demanding jobs to experience injuries to this area. Besides sudden trauma, overusing the area can also lead to pain and osteoporosis. The pain can be very significant and can lead to a limitation in mobility. Conventional treatments may fail and sometimes patients even consider surgery as their only option. This should be a last resort due to sometimes unsatisfactory but irreversible results, and prolonged post-op pain and rehabilitation time. With stem cell or PRP treatment, however, you can use the cells of your own body to repair the damaged tissue, thereby avoiding the potential risks of more invasive treatment options. PRP and stem cell treatments get to work restoring the damaged cartilage, addressing the actual problem rather than focusing on the symptoms. It gets to work restoring the actual tissue that has been damaged rather than masking the problem.
Tennis elbow, or lateral epicondylitis, or common extensor tendonitis, is a very common source of pain, particularly in people over 30. It is caused by damage in the lateral part of a person’s elbow, where the forearm extensor tendons attach themselves to bone. The condition is usually caused by overuse of the elbow, forearm, and hand and it can be very painful. It is known as “tennis” elbow because tennis players (but also other racquet sport players, fencers, carpenters, sewers, plumbers, weight lifters, and knitters) overuse the muscles attaching to this area and sometimes develop chronic pain that is very resistant to conventional treatments and severely impairs or prevents valued activities of daily living. By opting for PRP and/or stem cell treatment, however, the damaged tissues themselves are repaired using cells found in your own body. This allows the tissue to regenerate, thereby actually solving the problem, rather than focusing solely on the symptoms and treatments that simply mask the problem. Results for tennis elbow are among the most successful and well documented in all of regenerative medicine.
Golfer’s elbow, or medial epicondylitis, or common flexor tendonitis, is another common source of pain, albeit less common than tennis elbow. The medial elbow is where the common flexor tendon, of the muscles that control the fingers and wrists, attaches to bone. Those who swing, grip, or flex their wrists and hands very often (such as golfers) can experience frequent small tears in this tendon, eventually culminating in one large injury. Calcium deposits and scar tissue can then develop in the affected area, making the condition chronic. Golfer’s elbow can generally be identified by stiffness in the medial elbow, as well as tenderness and pain. Some people experience tingling sensations in their fingers and find their wrists and arms become weaker. In some cases, inflammation in the elbow can occur and people can even develop a fever. Finally, the elbow starts to look deformed and it becomes impossible to use it properly. Treatment usually involves rest and rehabilitation, but surgery may be required as well. Unfortunately, this is not always successful and has it’s own risks including prolonged post-op pain and rehabilitation. A viable alternative that you can exploit in Ventura County and surrounding areas is PRP and/or stem cell treatment, which regenerate the affected tissue using your own body’s cells.
Ulnar Collateral Ligament (UCL) Injury
This type of injury can be incredibly painful, affecting not just the elbow but also the wrist and the arm. It is generally considered to be a sports injury, caused by repetitive movements of the arms and elbows. However, non-athletes can experience it too, particularly if they have had a fall or a high-impact accident. The condition usually exhibits itself through significant pain in the medial elbow area. When the elbow is moved, pain tends to increase. Additionally, it is common to hear grinding and popping sounds, and some people find that their elbow locks up for short periods of time. Just after the initial damage has occurred, bruising and swelling can be present. If conservative care doesn’t help or if the condition becomes chronic, surgery is often recommended. Most people would prefer to avoid this as it is not without risk and can fail to resolve the problem. Through stem PRP and/or stem cell treatment, however, the damaged tissue will actually be enabled to regenerate and repair itself by using the body’s own cells. This is done in-office, meaning no hospitalization is necessary either. This is generally the best option to truly repair the condition and hopefully avoid surgery.
As you can see, most elbow problems can be resolved through PRP and stem cell treatment. The Regenerative Medicine Specialists are here to discuss the various options that are available to you. By visiting our doctors, you can find relief from your elbow problems in most cases without needing to revert to steroids or surgery.