There are several injuries that only occur in the shoulder and elbow of throwing athletes. Throwing is a specific motion that puts abnormal strain on the shoulder and elbow and injuries can result in problems that other patients do not experience.
Some common problems encountered in the elbows of throwing athletes include ulnar collateral ligament tears, flexor-pronator muscle strain or tendonitis, valgus extension overload syndrome with olecranon osteophytes, medial epicondyle apophysitis or avulsion, olecranon stress fractures, osteochondritis dissecans of the capitellum, and loose bodies. These conditions often respond to rest and physical therapy, but can involve surgical treatment as well.
Shoulder problems can manifest as tendonitis, labral tears, bursitis, capsular contractures, and scapular (shoulder blade) abnormalities. GIRD, or glenohumeral internal rotation deficit is a common problem in pitchers that results from scarring of the joint capsule.
The first step in treatment of throwing injuries involves proper diagnosis with an experienced sports medicine physician. The MFA offers physicians who have worked with throwing athletes at the college and professional levels and would be happy to take part in your care.