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What Causes Burning Pain in Elbow & How is it Treated?

Many a times, when we get up in the morning or when doing some work, the elbow joint suddenly starts to feel warm as if it has been put on a boiler and there is sheering pain accompanying. If you have felt a burning pain in elbow like this before or are feeling it now then this article is meant for you. Before we get to the treatment part let us first understand what tends to cause this burning pain in elbow.

What Causes Burning Pain in Elbow?

What Causes Burning Pain in Elbow?

Normally, a burning pain in elbow it is an indicator of a much larger issue with your elbow such as a lateral or medial epicondylitis or inflammation of the shoulder joint. These injuries can be brought on by repetitive strain injuries or RSI. A repetitive strain injury is an injury when you tend to injure the muscles and tendons of the body part that you tend to overuse. In this case, it is the elbow.

Elbow is a part of the body which is quite widely used right from the morning from brushing your teeth up until you go to bed at night. Similarly, athletes involved in playing tennis, golf, badminton, and other sports which involve the use of the hands repetitively are also prone to repetitive stress injuries resulting in burning pain in elbow.

An individual can also injure the elbow muscles by just pushing and pulling normal household items such as when moving from one place to another and sorting things out. All these activities cause the elbow to get fatigued resulting in inflammation and hence the burning pain in elbow.

Medical Conditions That Can Cause Burning Pain in Elbow

Normally, an individual will feel Burning Pain either in the inner part or the outer part of the elbows. The elbows will feel tender to touch and there will be warmth in the elbow area. The pain will get worse with touching or squeezing the elbow. You may feel pain with holding an object in your hand like a cup of coffee. Some of the common conditions that can cause burning pain in the elbows are:

What are the Treatments for Burning Pain in Elbow?

Conservative approach is the best way to treat burning pain in elbow, although surgical correction is required rarely to get rid of burning pain in elbow.

The treatment for this differs depending on what exactly is causing the burning pain in elbow, is it the muscle, tendon, or ligament, inflammation or tear. So, the first thing to do is to stay away from activities that may aggravate the condition like not pushing or pulling heavy objects, not playing sports for some time till the condition heals up.

NSAIDS for Burning Elbow Pain:

The next step towards treatment of burning pain in elbow is to take nonsteroidal antiinflammatories in the form of Tylenol or ibuprofen to help with pain relief. It also has a calming influence on the ligaments and muscles and allows them to calm down. You can use a cooling gel or get a heating pad to calm down the inflammation that causes burning pain in elbow. These are available over the counter and you can also ask the treating physician for a prescription for these.

Elbow Wraps for Treating Burning Pain in Elbow:

Elbow wraps can also be quite an effective way to treat burning pain in elbow. You can consult your physician for a prescription for a suitable and effective elbow wrap. This limits the motion of the elbow and allows the muscle to heal faster and also helps in relieving burning pain in elbow. The recommended time for wearing the wrap is about half an hour for optimal results.

Compression Sleeves for Treating Burning Pain in Elbow:

Additionally, compression sleeves can also be prescribed for burning pain in elbow by the physician and also available over the counter. This helps by supporting the elbow while the inflammation calms down and helps in pain relief. The sleeve covers the entire elbow and restricts its motion and protects it from any additional harm.

If all these measures fail to improve the symptoms of burning pain in elbow, then the physician may recommend surgery to explore the elbow and look for the defect and correct it.

An important point to note here is that you need to take frequent breaks from your work or sporting activities so that your elbow gets the much needed rest that it truly deserves as much as you, so that you do not end up having burning pain in the elbows.


  1. Mayo Clinic. (2021). Nonsteroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drugs (NSAIDs). https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/osteoarthritis/in-depth/pain-medications/art-20045899
  2. Summit Medical Group. (2020). Elbow Sprain: Care Instructions. https://www.summitmedicalgroup.com/library/adult_health/sma_elbow_sprain_exercises/
  3. American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons. (2018). Elbow (Olecranon) Bursitis https://orthoinfo.aaos.org/en/diseases–conditions/elbow-olecranon-bursitis

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Team PainAssist
Team PainAssist
Written, Edited or Reviewed By: Team PainAssist, Pain Assist Inc. This article does not provide medical advice. See disclaimer
Last Modified On:August 11, 2023

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