How do you know if your elbow is broken or fractured?

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Original Post

My elbow has hurt for about a week now and its just getting worse. I have taken aleeve and iced it. But now I cannot put my fist to my shoulder and i cannot extend it w/o feeling pressure and pain..


Posted at 12:48am May 9, 2008 EDT


x ray.

My daughter snapped her elbow in half once and we totally couldn't tell. I took her in to the ER to have xrays and lo and behold...

I'm queen of broken arms. 1 with her...4 with the lil son. The big son...nothing.

Posted at 12:49am May 9, 2008 EDT

Spiderbite says

broken and fractured are the same thing...

What did you do to it? It could be sprained. The only way to really tell is to go to get an xray I imagine. I am told a sprain hurts worse than a broken bone.

I hope you feel better. I had a similar problem with my foor about 2 weeks ago. I swore I broke. i couldn't even lift my leg up without it hurting let alone walk, but now it just twinges when I walk.

Posted at 12:50am May 9, 2008 EDT

What happened to it?

Sounds like you might either have a hairline fracture or a sprained tendon. If it's been a week, best to see the doctor.

Posted at 12:50am May 9, 2008 EDT

Spiderbite says

The key to making my foot feel better was to stop using it completely. To wrap it up and not move it. Try wrapping it up, but if you have health insurance you had might as well get it checked out.

I did/do not have health insurance so I took the wait and see method of healing. It took almost 2 weeks to be able to walk again.

Posted at 12:52am May 9, 2008 EDT

i have no idea what i did to it.. i dont remember hitting it or anything.. it just started to hurt

Posted at 12:53am May 9, 2008 EDT

yoboseiyo says

sprains tend to hurt worse than breaks, but if you can't fully extend your elbow, and you can't touch your shoulder, i think you should get some xrays.

Posted at 12:53am May 9, 2008 EDT

It's most likely a sprain, but it could very well be a hairline fracture.

I slipped and fell once, landing hard on my right foot. Everyone at work had my paranoid saying it could be a hairline fracture. So finally I caved and had it xrayed 2 days later and the first doctor that saw me (she was getting off when she came in to see me) told me it was most likely a sprain but she would have done the same if she was in my position, go in to rule out a fracture.

Turned out it was a bad sprain.

And that could very well be the same for you, but you won't know without an xray.

Posted at 12:54am May 9, 2008 EDT

Spiderbite says

kittycrossbones says:
i have no idea what i did to it.. i dont remember hitting it or anything.. it just started to hurt

That's what happened to my foot! I remember kinda stepping it funny on a Saturday, but it felt fine so I walked around no problem.

Then on Sunday i woke up and it hurt to walk so I limped around, and by Sunday night I had to crawl across the floor and it hurt sooo bad. Then it took to weeks till I could walk. It's still a little swollen looking...

Posted at 12:56am May 9, 2008 EDT

:( this really blows lol

sorry about your foot!

Posted at 12:56am May 9, 2008 EDT