Medial Epicondylitis Workup

Updated: Jan 24, 2019
  • Author: Craig C Young, MD; Chief Editor: Craig C Young, MD  more...
  • Print

Imaging Studies

Plain radiographs may show calcification adjacent to the medial epicondyle in 20-30% of patients with medial epicondylitis, but radiography is not usually needed in the initial workup of this condition. [1] However, radiographs should be obtained if there is a history of a traumatic injury, when the physical examination is suspicious for a fracture, and in cases that are recalcitrant to appropriate therapy. Plain radiographs may also be useful in the evaluation for tumors and apophyseal injury.

Note: In pediatric patients in whom a diagnosis of medial epicondyle apophysitis, or little leaguer's elbow, is suspected, a radiograph is not only warranted, but also necessary, as the results will help to guide the patient's treatment.

Bone scanning is useful for evaluating stress fractures, infection, and tumors.

Computed tomography (CT) scanning is useful for evaluating OCD and stress fractures.

MRI is useful for evaluating OCD, fractures, and soft-tissue injury. MRI arthrography is useful for evaluating rupture of the UCL.

Ultrasonography is contraindicated in children with open growth plates. [13]