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Most elbow problems will start to improve within 8-24 weeks

Elbow pain can be a symptom of many different conditions. Sometimes it is difficult to know what is causing the elbow to be painful, as there may not have been an obvious reason. Often an elbow can become painful a few days after doing an activity that is different for you, such as gardening or decorating.

The pain can be felt around the elbow joint and at times can spread into the forearm.

For some their elbow pain may be the result of a direct injury sustained from playing a sport or a fall or a blow to the elbow.

Most elbow problems will start to improve within 8-24 weeks

Symptoms to check

Click the plus sign to see a list of problems that could be a sign you may need to be checked urgently

Get advice from 111 now if your arm/elbow:

  • hurts when you exercise but the pain goes away when you rest
  • you are experiencing chest pain/tightness with your elbow pain
  • is swollen and you have a very high temperature or feel hot and shivery
  • is extremely painful and difficult to move
  • the pain is severe and started after an injury or accident, like a fall
  • you have pins and needles or numbness that won’t go away
  • has been injured and you heard a snapping noise or your arm has changed shape

111 will tell you what to do. They can tell you the right place to get help if you need to see someone.Go to 111.nhs.uk or call 111

Immediate medical advice is available by contacting NHS 111

Referral Information

If your elbow pain persists then you can self-refer to see a physiotherapist who can help diagnose your problem and guide you on how best to help recovery.