Locking elbow joint

Elbow joint locks or gets stuck in a particular position, usually for just a short period of time. This can be due to loose bodies or surface damage. Swelling to the elbow joint can also cause locking and this maybe due to a bleed from an injury or haemotoma. The joint will also have a protective mechanism if the joint is injured with a fracture or a ligament tear or rupture and can therefore lock to prevent further damage.

Arthritis where there is inflammation in the joint can also stop the joint from moving sufficiently. Injuries and conditions that cause this symptom are listed below:
  • Osteochondritis Dissecans

    Osteochondritis Dissecans is a fragmentation of the cartilage and sometimes the underlying bone within a joint. This is common in adolescents as the ends of the bones are not yet fully hardened. This elbow injury can be caused and exacerbated by throwing sports, so resting from this activity can help to ease the pain. Read more on the symptoms, causes and treatments. 

  • Lateral Elbow Pain

    The most common term for pain on the outside of the elbow is Tennis Elbow (Lateral Epicondylitis). However, there are a number of other causes of lateral elbow pain which should be considered as well as acute elbow injuries such as ligament sprains and fractures. Other potential causes of pain on the outside of the elbow include referred pain, radial tunnel syndrome, synovitis, bursitis and osteochondritis dissecans.