Growth Plate Separation/Fracture in Elbow

Hi there. New to the forum. Just got some bad news for my son…he has a growth plate injury in his elbow. Separation/fracture. He’s 9 years old. He starts physical therapy in two weeks and the Dr. indicated it would be 4-6 months before throwing hard and long distances again. Our season starts in 6 weeks and was hoping he could at least play 2nd base with short throws if all was feeling better.

Has anybody had a son/daughter that has dealt with this injury and what was the timetable?

My son went through a similar situation when he was 11, we took 7 months off. I taught him how to fish that summer, had a great time learning to fish and took his mind off of baseball. Listen to the doctor, I wouldn’t even let swing a bat let alone play second base. It’s not worth it. You and your son will not miss the 9U baseball season. Best of luck!

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What’s crazy is the Dr. said he may be able to play in his basketball games next weekend if there is no pain to the touch on the elbow. She said since the movement in basketball is different than baseball, he may be able to play.

He will definitely miss it this season because I’m the manager and he’ll be out there with the team whether he’s playing or not. That will be tough for him.

With regards to playing basketball, the normal shooting motion might not be an issue for your son’ elbow but what about things like collisions or falls? Growth plate injuries have the potential to affect growth. You might want to inquire further about this with the doctor.

I agree with Jerp33. Your son has too much future ahead of him to take a chance. Let your son be involved with the team via some other role (e.g. equipment manager, etc.).

My son had the same injury at 14 while pitching in a varsity game last April. Diagnosed the next day and surgery the day after. Full rest/recovery for 4 months. Started PT 2 times /week with a sports therapist in August with swings allowed initially, and a few weeks later started 25 flat ground throws from 25’ to start. Gradual increase in throwing reps, distance, and effort till December. Started modified bullpens off the mound this month with 90% velocity (FB and Change only). Still having his core strength, hip strength and mobility, and throwing mechanics evaluated at PT every 2 weeks.

Yes, surgeon, coach, and therapist said this could be done quicker, but all agreed there was no reason to rush back at this point. We traveled with the HS and travel team and it sucked for him that he couldn’t play, but I’m more confident his recovery will be complete by being patient.

Good luck.

A fractured growth plate at 9 is likely from overuse. I highly recommend following Major League Baseball’s “Pitch Smart” guidelines for youth pitchers. Here are the guidelines for your son’s age.