Dislocated Elbow

Knoxville’s Best Choice for Dislocated Elbow Treatment in Eastern Tennessee

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What is a Dislocated Elbow?

A dislocated elbow happens when the radius and ulna bones of the wrist move out of place in relation to the humerus bone of the upper arm. Most of the time, this type of injury is caused by trauma, like a fall onto an open hand or a direct blow to the elbow, which causes the joint to become out of place.

The condition can be partial, which is called a “subluxation,” or total, which means that the bones have lost all contact with each other. Dislocated elbows can be very painful and may cause deformity, swelling, bruises, and loss of function. For perfect alignment and to avoid complications, you need to see a doctor right away.

dislocated elbow


When an arm is dislocated, it can hurt and look like it is out of place. For quick and effective treatment, it’s important to notice the signs right away. Here are the most common signs:

  • Pain
  • Visible deformity
  • Swelling and bruises
  • Having trouble or not being able to bend and raise the elbow
  • Numbness or tingling
  • Warmth

If you think you have a dislocated elbow because of these signs, you should see an orthopedic doctor right away. Treatment as soon as possible can improve outcomes and lower the chance of long-term problems.


Most treatments start right away with an exam, followed by steps to adjust and support the joint. Here is a list of common ways to treat:

  • A doctor or nurse will gently move the bones back to where they should be. This process, called “reduction,” can be painful and might need to be done while you are asleep or under anesthesia
  • After the elbow is realigned, it may be put in a splint or cast for a few weeks to keep it from moving.
  • This lets the muscles and soft tissues heal.
  • Pain medications you can buy over-the-counter or get from your doctor can help you deal with pain and reduce swelling
  • After the first few weeks of healing, physical therapy can help restore the elbow’s strength and range of motion
  • If blood vessels or nerves are hurt or if bones are broken, elbow surgery may be needed. It is also thought about when an easy reduction doesn’t work


At Tennessee Orthopaedic Alliance, your joint health and comfort are very important to us. A dislocated elbow can make it hard to do everyday things, but it doesn’t have to if you take care of it properly and right away. Our skilled team is committed to giving you high-quality treatment choices that fit your needs.

For more information, give us a call or schedule an appointment online. Our orthopedic clinic has multiple locations. We serve patients in Knoxville, TN, Oak Ridge, TN, Sevierville, TN, and Lenoir City, TN. Don’t let pain hold you back; reach out to us today for immediate and thorough care.

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