Muscle strain is a common ailment that can affect anyone at any time. It’s a painful condition that happens when the muscles of the forearm are overused. The injury often occurs while performing activities like writing, typing, or playing sports, but it can also occur while simply using your hands. The pain can be sharp or dull, and it can travel from the forearm to the hand or up the arm. And though muscle strains often go away on their own, they are still best treated with rest and ice to ensure that the injury doesn’t become more serious.
But what causes this strain in the first place? If you are wondering why does my elbow hurts, then you’ve come to the right place. In the following sections, we’ll discuss the various reasons behind inflammation of the flexor-pronator muscles, its effects on the elbow, and ways to treat it.
8 Proven Treatments for Inflammation of the Flexor Pronator Muscle
Inflammation of the flexor pronator muscles, also known as flexor tendonitis, can be quite painful and make it very difficult to use your hands and arms properly. Thankfully, there are treatments you can do at home and lifestyle changes you can make to reduce the pain and the chance of the condition worsening over time. It is important to use the right cure as soon as possible, if you can’t afford it, you could get no credit check loans in Canada. Here’s what you need to know about inflammation of the flexor pronator muscles, its common causes, and how to treat it, and when under medical supervision.
1. Conservative Treatment Like Heat, Cold & Simple Analgesics
If your elbow is inflamed from constant stress and strain on it while you’re using your hands for manual tasks, then a proper warm-up or some simple exercises will help you loosen up your muscles to reduce pain and stiffness in your forearm. Meanwhile, ice packs can provide pain relief if you don’t have time to properly warm-up before engaging in strenuous activities. Medications such as over-the-counter analgesics can also be used to manage pain if it gets worse over time. If these simple treatments don’t work or make things worse after a few days of self-management with heat, cold, and pain medications—seek professional help from an orthopedic surgeon who specializes in tendon injuries.
2. Nonsteroidal Anti-inflammatory Agents
If your tendon is simply inflamed because of overuse, then applying cold to it can help with inflammation control and pain relief. This also helps accelerate blood flow to expedite healing after just a few days, so be sure to ice any injury that needs immediate attention or is fresh. Meanwhile, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory agents (NSAIDs) like ibuprofen are used in chronic cases when you suffer from recurring inflammation despite simple rest and ice treatment. These drugs block enzymes in your body that make prostaglandins—compounds that cause swelling, redness, and pain when they accumulate in inflamed areas like swollen elbow tendons.
3. Physical Therapy
If you have chronic pain from inflamed flexor-pronator muscles, then a physical therapist can help you perform exercises that keep them loose and strengthen them as well as work on other areas that cause overuse. In general, strengthening exercises for your forearm should target both extensors and flexors to relieve stress on each muscle separately. This will not only alleviate elbow pain but also prevent future injuries by balancing out uneven strength throughout your forearms. Doing these exercises regularly under guidance from a physical therapist or trainer is essential because doing them improperly can worsen the inflammation of the flexor-pronator muscles.
4. Range-Of-Motion Exercises
Since inflamed elbow tendons are often painful, it’s common to forget about them in favour of treating other injuries in your body when you’re busy with work or school. However, it’s important to remember that ignoring tendon pain can result in tissue loss and permanent damage if left unchecked. So be sure to perform simple range-of-motion exercises like wrist rotation at least twice a day—preferably right after every meal—to keep inflamed elbow tendons loose and flexible while you recover. These simple exercises can prevent stiffness and scar tissue formation around your elbow tendon while restoring lost range of motion.
5. Deep Heat Modalities
Applying heat to inflamed elbow tendons can be difficult because it hurts to put pressure on them but consider investing in a heating pad that reaches temperatures around 110°F—that’s hot enough to penetrate your skin and warm your tendons without causing more pain. If you’re interested in other modalities for treating tendon injuries, then ultrasound machines are also helpful for keeping your tendons warm while they heal. As an added bonus, heat also has analgesic properties that help manage pain if your tendon feels tender after an injury or flare-up.
6. Injection with Local Anesthetic
Most people who suffer from chronic tendonitis of their flexor pronator muscles don’t respond to standard treatments like rest, ice, and range-of-motion exercises, even after months or years. If you’re in that category and feel like your only options are invasive surgery or amputation—consider trying injection therapy with a local anesthetic like bupivacaine (Marcaine). This steroid-free solution can help numb your elbow pain while stimulating collagen growth for faster healing of inflamed tendon fibres. Although many medical professionals frown upon these injections because they rarely work for long, they’re worth considering if all other treatment methods have failed you in the past year.
7. Injection with Steroid for Symptomatic Relief
Injections with corticosteroids are considered a last resort treatment if you have chronic inflammation in your flexor-pronator muscles and it’s interfering with your everyday life. Although these injections aren’t always successful—they can result in a steroid burst that flares up symptoms in some people—they might be worth a try if nothing else has worked for you so far. If you want to explore steroid injections, then talk to your doctor about intralesional triamcinolone acetonide (Kenalog) or methylprednisolone acetate (Depo-Medrol). These powerful anti-inflammatory medications help restore a healthy range of motion and relieve elbow pain associated with tendonitis.
The final treatment for persistent inflammation of your flexor pronator muscles is surgery to either remove scar tissue or debride (remove) damaged tissue from your elbow tendons. These surgical procedures can be risky, and they’re most effective when you catch tendon damage early on, but that doesn’t mean they should be avoided altogether if other treatments haven’t worked for you. Once you talk to your doctor about your options, he or she will help you determine whether you should pursue surgery or not—but remember that medical treatment almost always has risks, even if it’s minor complications like an infection that is easy to manage with antibiotics. If your condition is dire enough, then surgery might be worth considering because no other form of therapy can offer lasting results without a high risk of complications.
Prevention Is Better Than Cure
It’s always better to prevent tendonitis in your flexor pronator muscles than it is to treat it with a drug or invasive procedure. If you want to keep your elbow tendons healthy, then focus on doing a self-myofascial release on a regular basis (at least once per week) and take steps like rest and ice whenever you feel pain in that area.