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Thread: elbow/bicep contracture

  1. #1
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    elbow/bicep contracture

    I have a bicep contracture in my right arm thus not being able to straighten my arm, whats the best way to eradicate this. Also where can i buy some splints to aid this.

  2. #2
    I had elbow contractures. Five years ago, therapists tried everything they could think of, including Dynasplints that cost a fortune just to lease. The solution? I started working out about 6 months ago, including many triceps exercises. The result? Beautifully straight arms. Exercise can't solve everything, but the contractures were just over 5 years old. They're gone now.

    I'm C5/6.

  3. #3
    Elbow flexion contractures are most common in people with C5 or above injuries, although they can occur in people with C6 or lower injuries. They are most common in those who do not have active triceps function (or those who do not actively exercise their triceps).

    It is important to know at what stage the contracture is. If it is calcified, then stretching alone may not help it. Prior to that point, stretching and ultrasound are often used to loosen up the tight collegen fibers, tendons, muscles and ligaments. Botox can be used on the opposing muscle (ie, the biceps) but will result in weakness of that muscle so is not usually done unless you are C4 or higher.

    Splints should be custom fit as they can cause pain, AD and even pressure ulcers if not properly fit or applied.

    Surgery is an option for some, but should be considered a last resort, and only done if there is a potential that the end result will increase function (not just improve appearance).

    You need to see your SCI physician (hopefully a physiatrist) and an expert OT to help you with this problem. Prevention is always easier than treatment of this condition.

    (KLD)

  4. #4
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    what kind of tricep exercises did you do, im assuming you dont have tricep movement.

  5. #5
    rtr must have at least some C7 function, since this is where active motion of the triceps comes in. It is usually not possible for those with C5 or C6 injuries unless they are fairly incomplete (or get return).

    (KLD)

  6. #6
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    What is return and how do i know i can get it?

  7. #7
    Originally posted by SCI-Nurse:

    rtr must have at least some C7 function, since this is where active motion of the triceps comes in. It is usually not possible for those with C5 or C6 injuries unless they are fairly incomplete (or get return).

    (KLD)
    Yes, I do have some return. I didn't know it until I started working out though. I should have stated that in my original post, but we were heading out the door as soon as I logged off. I didn't intend to create any false impressions.

    I was evaluated by a physiatrist recently. I'm still C5/6 because only contiguous function counts. Even though I can move some additional muscles in my trunk (also discovered recently by working out), my level is still classified as C5/6.

    If exercise and desire could cure us without the need for medical intervention, we'd all be out of our chairs by now.

  8. #8
    Return means function (sensation or motion) that comes back after your injury. This can occur days, weeks, months or years after the injury, is often very difficult to detect unless you are actively looking forward, and its impossible to predict if it will or will not occur. Early return is the only good predictor for continuing return, but even then it is impossible to say how much will return.

    (KLD)

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