Common medial elbow injuries in the adolescent athlete

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Abstract

Recently there has been increased year-round sports participation among children and adolescents with limited to no rest periods. This has led to increases in pediatric repetitive stress injuries, once considered a rarity. Whether in the throwing athlete or in the athlete that experiences repetitive axial loading; increased medial tension and overload syndromes can lead to stress reactions and fractures. This occurs in the developing athlete due to the bone being weaker than the surrounding tendons and ligaments. The medial elbow is a high stress area and is susceptible to many conditions including apophysitis, avulsion fractures and ulnar collateral ligament disruption. Valgus stress can cause injury to the medial elbow which can lead to increased lateral compression, Panner's disease and osteochondral lesions of the capitellum and olecranon. The purpose of this manuscript is to review common elbow disorders in the adolescent population, outline management and highlight important features of rehabilitation.

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