Dislocated Throwing Elbow


#1

Does anyone out there have any experience with a dislocated throwing elbow? My 13 yr old son dislocated his elbow during his spring football game. The elbow was reset but had to have the medial epicondyle reset with a screw. Just trying to find some similar stories


#2

For a 13 year old, I would assume, knowing nothing else, that his growth and development takes precedence over anything that puts stress on this appendage. His quality of life and his overall ability to function properly with that arm, not to mention possible complications later on in his early thirties, does warrant my concern.

I mention these considerations because I’ve coached and managed mature pitchers and backstops who have had similar, not exact, injuries during their teenage years playing football, rugby and especially hockey, only to have one situation after another haunt them with all kinds of issues later on with me. Now I would assume, and this is purely a guess on my part, that the reason why these players were with the clubs that I coached, and not with MLB, was because of some of those prior injuries and continued demands on those parts of the body. Now again, this is purely a guess on my part.


#3

What level of baseball did you coach? You had players that dislocated their throwing elbow? From reading your email, am I assume that he may have more issues down the road because of this injury?


#4

Before retiring, I was with several Independent clubs/Leagues of Professional Baseball for 21 years. Eighteen (18) of those years in various capacities as field staff, assistant pitching coach, pitching coach, bullpen coach, then my remaining services independently scouting.
The major player’s pool with these clubs were professionals and a small mix of amateurs. All of which had various abilities. The majority of the professionals had various physical and age issues, all of which had them at the stage and place in their life of where they were. Being in the Independent Leagues was a far cry from the Affiliates and their MLB counterparts. It is what it was, short and simple.
Those with some sort of physical issue showed signs (in my opinion) of neglect and pushing the limits long before being with the clubs that I was staffing. This is not to say that every club in the Independents is staffed as such, again like I mentioned, just the one’s I was staffing.
The signs of discomfort and life adjustments, pregame and postgame attention to physical issues was a labor intensive for all that I saw. The hours spent applying liniments, support wraps, and such indicated a life devoted to only one way of existing in this profession. Unfortunately, decisions made early in their lives had an impact on everyday life and the simplest of things weren’t that simple any more.
Arm and shoulder issues seemed to be the most painful and it was apparent that a great deal of thought went into just about every move and decision. Reaching for a simple door knob and the choice of body language before had, was very noticeable, not to mention other moves - like waiting casually for someone to pass through the heavy player’s entrance doors… then slipping through with the following.
I also notice the way some players - pitchers in particular, would sit in a certain way at restaurants, lounges, and even in the dugouts. The obvious was the way they favored one side or the other and the way they did things while just walking … rolling a shoulder constantly and rubbing parts of their lower pitching arm.
The bottom line here is this … these men had selected a life, deliberately, and made decisions during their life early on, that required meeting certain water marks to continue. One misstep in that decision process involving their body came back to haunt them big time. Add to the fact that this profession is not one that’s easily transferred to doing something else for a living… when baseball is all you know …. it’s in with both feet or nothing. Kind-a hard … not impossible, to turn around and pay the bills doing something else.
For a youngster who plays this sport … any sport for that matter, and sustains an injury, 100% of the after attention has got to consider how that injury will impact the quality of life later on… into his/her twenties, thirties and beyond. Addressing the same physical activity, over and over again, just begs for regrets later on.

With respect to your son, I’m no specialist in this area of post injury management, but I have seen the results of a very poor decision process in that regard. This constant chasing velocity, travel teams, mom and dad’s pride coupled with motivation speeches, private lessons upon lessons, and so forth, comes at a high price sometimes. I just wish the price tag was plainly marked as easy as it is on a piece of clothing on a hanger.