Elbow Bursitis: Exercises

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Your Care Instructions

Here are some examples of typical rehabilitation exercises for your condition. Start each exercise slowly. Ease off the exercise if you start to have pain.

Your doctor or physiotherapist will tell you when you can start these exercises and which ones will work best for you.

How to do the exercises

Elbow flexion stretch

Elbow flexion stretch
slide 1 of 4
slide 1 of 4, Elbow flexion stretch,
  1. Lift the arm that bothers you, and bend the elbow. Your palm should face toward you.
  2. With your other hand, gently push on the back of your affected forearm. Press your hand toward your shoulder until you feel a stretch in the back of your upper arm.
  3. Hold for at least 15 to 30 seconds.
  4. Repeat 2 to 4 times.

Elbow extension stretch

Elbow extension stretch
slide 2 of 4
slide 2 of 4, Elbow extension stretch,
  1. Extend your affected arm in front of you with your palm facing away from you.
  2. Bend back your wrist, pointing your hand up toward the ceiling.
  3. With your other hand, gently bend your wrist farther until you feel a mild to moderate stretch in your forearm.
  4. Hold for at least 15 to 30 seconds.
  5. Repeat 2 to 4 times.
  6. Repeat steps 1 through 5. But this time extend your affected arm in front of you with your palm facing up. Then bend back your wrist, pointing your hand toward the floor.

Pronation and supination stretch

Pronation and supination stretch
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slide 3 of 4, Pronation and supination stretch,
  1. Keep your affected elbow at your side, bent at about 90 degrees. Grasp a pen, pencil, or stick, and wrap your hand around it. If you don't have something to hold on to, make a fist instead.
  2. Slowly turn your forearm as far as you can back and forth in each direction. Your hand should face up and then down.
  3. Hold each position for about 6 seconds.
  4. Relax for up to 10 seconds between repetitions.
  5. Repeat 8 to 12 times.

Hand flips

Hand flips
slide 4 of 4
slide 4 of 4, Hand flips,
  1. While seated, place your affected forearm on your thigh. Your palm should face down.
  2. Flip your hand over so the back of your hand rests on your thigh and your palm is up. Alternate between palm up and palm down while keeping your forearm on your thigh.
  3. Repeat 8 to 12 times.

Follow-up care is a key part of your treatment and safety. Be sure to make and go to all appointments, and call your doctor or nurse call line if you are having problems. It's also a good idea to know your test results and keep a list of the medicines you take.

Where can you learn more?

Go to https://www.healthwise.net/patientEd

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