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How do you treat nursemaid's elbow?

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Don't try to straighten the arm or move the elbow back into place. Your child will probably resist, and you could cause more serious damage. You can give them over-the-counter pain medicine, such as acetaminophen or ibuprofen, but never aspirin for a child under 12.

If no bones are broken, the doctor will do a "reduction maneuver" in their office to put the elbow back into the correct position. They hold the child's wrist and elbow, then carefully move the arm in a specific way until the elbow pops back into place. You may hear a "click" when it happens.

It only takes a few seconds, but it can hurt. The child will probably cry for a few seconds.

From: Nursemaid's Elbow WebMD Medical Reference

SOURCES:

KidsHealth web site: "Nursemaid's Elbow."

Boston Children's Hospital web site: "Nursemaid's Elbow."

Kliegman, R.M., Behrman, R.E., Jenson, H.B., Stanton, B.F., editors, , 19th edition, Saunders Elsevier, 2011. Nelson Textbook of Pediatrics

Roberts J.R., Hedges, J.R., editors, , 5th edition, Saunders Elsevier, 2009. Clinical Procedures in Emergency Medicine

Reviewed by Dan Brennan on October 22, 2017

SOURCES:

KidsHealth web site: "Nursemaid's Elbow."

Boston Children's Hospital web site: "Nursemaid's Elbow."

Kliegman, R.M., Behrman, R.E., Jenson, H.B., Stanton, B.F., editors, , 19th edition, Saunders Elsevier, 2011. Nelson Textbook of Pediatrics

Roberts J.R., Hedges, J.R., editors, , 5th edition, Saunders Elsevier, 2009. Clinical Procedures in Emergency Medicine

Reviewed by Dan Brennan on October 22, 2017

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What is a reduction for nursemaid's elbow?

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