Felis ISSN 2398-2950

Elbow: traumatic luxation

Contributor(s): James Cook, Noel Fitzpatrick

Introduction

  • Uncommon.
  • Usually lateral luxation.
  • Signs: carriage of limb in semi-flexion, distal limb abducted and supinated.
  • Treatment: relocation by closed reduction, or open reduction +/- reconstruction of damaged collateral ligament(s) (rarely needed).
  • Prognosis: good in most cases.

Pathogenesis

Etiology

  • Trauma - lateral force applied to joint when antebrachium is twisted and elbow flexed more than 90° (anconeal process disengaged from supracondylar fossa).

Pathophysiology

  • Traumatic luxation of elbow joint.
  • Usually lateral displacement due to nature of trauma and medial epicondyle of humerus prevents medial displacement.
  • Organized intra-articular hematoma forms quickly, making closed reduction difficult with delay   →   best chance for closed reduction is within 24-72 hours.
  • Collateral ligament damage may cause permanent instability - requires reconstruction.
  • Degenerative joint disease (DJD) is long-term sequel.

Diagnosis

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Treatment

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Outcomes

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Further Reading

Publications

Refereed papers


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