The triceps tendon at the back of the upper arm inserts into the elbow. Injury can occur to the tendon from sudden impact such as a fall or over use.
Pain at the back of the elbow at rest and during exercise. It will be tender to touch pressing in just above the back of the elbow. The patient may have limited mobility and straightening the elbow against resistance will be painful as may stretching the triceps muscle.
Rest and ice or cold therapy to the injury in the first two days. Ice can be applied for 10 minutes every hour initially reducing frequency to two or three times a day as symptoms allow.
Gently stretch the triceps once it is pain free to do so and see a sports injury professional for advice on treatment and rehabilitation.
A professional therapist may use ultrasound or laser treatment to help reduce pain and inflammation. A doctor may prescribe anti-inflammatory medication such as ibuprofen. They may X-ray the elbow to rule out avulsion fractures which is where the tendon pulls a small piece of bone away with it.
Later in the healing process after the acute stage has passed applying heat and wearing a heat retainer is likely to be more beneficial. Sports massage may also help the scar tissue heal in a more desirable way.