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Dr. Andrew Rynne

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Found swelling and small hard mass on elbow. What could it be?

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Dr. R.A. Singh

Emergency Medicine Specialist

Practicing since :2000

Answered : 2150 Questions

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Posted on Tue, 15 Jan 2013 in Skin Hair and Nails
Question: about 3weeks ago i had minor swelling to my Lt outer elbow and after the swelling went away a small hard mass remains. the initial swelling was a little tender but not hot or inflammed, it gradually went down over the next 2 weeks and left a small mass.
the mass is about an inch around, maybe 1/2 thick and feels like a hard gel. it is not painful or inflammed. just a benign lump under the skin and that moves with the skin when touched. originally i thought i hurt my elbow when i was working on a hard floor for a short time.
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Answered by Dr. R.A. Singh 8 hours later
Hi,
Thanks for writing your query.

The swelling on your elbow can be due to bursitis. You had a history of injury on your elbow while working on the hard floor. This might cause inflammation of the bursa located near the elbow.

The gel like feeling is due to collection of fluid in the sac of the bursa, as a result of the injury.

You can take antiinflammatory medicines like Ibuprofen one tablet twice a day after meals along with antacid Omeprazole 20 mg. This will help in decreasing the inflammation.

You should get yourself examined by your doctor and if he thinks necessary, fluid from the swelling can be drained out. This fluid can be sent for further investigation. Corticosterone injection may be needed after drainage to prevent recurrence. Antibiotics can be started if there are signs of infected fluid.

Also give rest to your elbow.

I hope this is helpful to you. If you have any doubts, I will be happy to help.
Regards. Thanks

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