Being in Nebraska we have to travel a bit to do any skiing or snowboarding, but every year scores of Nebraskans cross the border into Colorado and Wyoming to indulge in their favorite winter sports. With the ski season upon us, skiing and snowboarding injuries will undoubtedly be on the rise. Elbow injuries such as fractures and dislocations are extremely common due to repeated falling. Before you hit the slopes it is important to be aware of the risks and how to avoid injury.
Injuries to the elbow can occur due to a variety of situations, but the most common cause in winter sports is direct impact to the elbow joint. Direct impact can cause dislocation, fracture the bones in the elbow, or damage tendons and ligaments. The two most common elbow injuries are:
Dislocation: When the elbow joint becomes separated, can be a complete dislocation or a partial dislocation.
Fracture: When any of the bones in the elbow are cracked. Fractures are not a full bone break, but just a crack, and there are a variety of types of fractures that can occur in the elbow: above the elbow, below the elbow, inside the elbow, at the growth plate, and a fracture dislocation. Any fracture can range from minor to severe and may require varying degrees of treatments.
One of the best ways to avoid injuries when hitting the slopes is to learn proper techniques. If you’ve never been skiing or snowboarding before, take a lesson! They will teach you on proper fall techniques to avoid injury (there will be a lot of falling when you are getting started).
If you are injured while skiing or snowboarding give Dr. Patrick Hurlbut or Dr. Matthew Byington a call. Dr. Hurlbut is a board-certified orthopaedic surgeon. He completed his residency at the University of Vermont in 1993, and a fellowship in Hand and Upper Extremity Surgery in 1994 at the University of Minnesota. He subsequently earned a Certificate of Added Qualification in Hand Surgery from the American Board of Orthopaedic Surgery. Dr. Hurlbut has been admitted to that American Society for Surgery of the Hand (ASSH), an elite professional society of hand surgeons. Prairie Orthopaedic & Plastic Surgery, PC and Dr. Hurlbut’s team uses the most advanced treatment options for recovery of maximum mobility, strength, and return of function. Dr. Hurlbut’s passion has been the diagnosis and treatment of shoulder, elbow and hand injuries but he also continues to practice in many areas of orthopaedics including total joint replacement and knee arthroscopy Dr. Matthew Byington is a Board Certified Orthopedic Surgeon with advanced fellowship training in Sports Medicine and Arthroscopic Surgery. He specializes in the non-operative and operative treatment of sports-related injuries as well as Knee, Shoulder and Elbow conditions. Whether your elbow injury occurred on the slopes or in your own warm living room, the physicians here at Prairie Orthopaedics are trained and ready to help.