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June 2020

Question:

My 13-year-old son just got hit with a baseball on his elbow. It is extremely tender to touch directly distal to the lateral epicondyle. It hurts to straighten and his ring finger is a little tingly. Is that typical of a growth plate fracture or some other type of fracture based on where it hurts with the soft tissue palpation?

- Arkansas (Parent)

 

Answer:

Thank you for your question and concern about your son. From the given description of your son’s injury, there is likely some soft tissue trauma that occurred from the baseball. If he was injured on the inside part of his elbow, he may have hit his ulnar nerve which is the “funny bone” everyone talks about. This nerve travels pretty superficially around the back and inside part of the elbow and if he was hit here, then that would explain the tingling in his small and ring fingers. He likely has a contusion or bruise, and even if there was a small crack in his bone, this should heal with some activity modification and slow return to activity. I hope this helps and answers your question!

- Philip Nowicki, MD



 

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All information on OrthoKids is for educational purposes only. For specific medical advice, diagnosis, and treatment, consult a fellowship trained, board certified pediatric orthopaedist.