Elbow History

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Introduction

Duration of illness

Acute or chronic

Circumstances of onset

Trauma (direct / indirect), repetitive overload, or spontaneous onset.

Mode of Onset

Are there red flags? Was the onset insidious?

Radiation

Does it radiate along compartment to the wrist.

Quality

Is it deep, dull, aching. Is there dysaethesia. Is it sharp or shooting.

Frequency

Is it related to activity.

Time of Onset

Does it come on during the day or night.

Precipitating and Aggravating Factors

Is it related to gripping / pinching, flexion of the elbow, supination, pronation. Is there pain and stiffness after rest. Is there locking.

Relieving Factors

Do certain positions or activities relieve it.

Associated features

Is there fever, weight loss, malaise.

Differential Diagnoses

Lateral Elbow Pain

Medial Elbow Pain

  • Medial Elbow Tendinopathy
  • Medial collateral ligament sprain (acute and chronic)
  • Ulnar neuritis
  • Avulsion fracture of the medial epicondyle (children and adolescents)
  • Apophysitis (children and adolescents)
  • Referred pain

Posterior Elbow Pain

Anterior Elbow Pain

Generalised

  • Osteoarthritis
  • If locking consider chondromalacia, osteochondritis, loose bodies

References