Diagnosing Cell Phone Elbow

According to a report in the Cleveland Clinic Journal of Medicine, long hours spent on your cell phone might not only burn through your plan's minutes—it could also lead to "cell phone elbow," technically known as cubital tunnel syndrome. With nerve pressure and decreased blood flow, this condition leaves suffering talkers with aching, burning, numbness or tingling in the forearm and hand.

Cell phone elbow is the second most common upper extremity nerve compression problem after the better known carpal tunnel syndrome, which causes similar pain and weakness in the wrists.

The Cleveland Clinic says cubital tunnel syndrome can also be triggered by other actions like leaning on an elbow while driving or nonergonomic work desks. If cell phone elbow progresses, it could lead to weakness and difficulty opening jars.

If you feel the symptoms of cell phone elbow, seek medical treatment. A doctor will first need to check for other possible causes for the pain, like a herniated disk or tumor. If it is cubital tunnel syndrome, the good news is most people can fix their problem with simple changes like talking on the phone less, using an earpiece or switching hands more frequently. But surgery is necessary in some cases.


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