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Health Tip

Home :: Arm Contusion, Forearm

Arm Contusion, Forearm

Bruising of skin and underlying tissues of the forearm caused by a direct blow. Contusions cause bleeding from ruptured small capillaries, allowing blood to infiltrate muscles, tendons or other soft tissue.

BODY PARTS INVOLVED

Tissues of the forearm, including blood vessels, muscles, tendons, nerves, covering to bone (periosteum) and connective tissue.

Causes

Direct blow to the forearm, usually from a blunt object.

Signs & Symptoms

  • Forearm swelling-either superficial or deep.
  • Pain and tenderness in the forearm.
  • Feeling of firmness when pressure is exerted on the injured area.
  • Discoloration under the skin, beginning with redness and progressing to the characteristic "black and blue" bruise.
  • Restricted forearm activity proportional to the extent of injury.

Treatment

Follow your doctor's instructions. These instructions are supplemental.

  • Use a sling to immobilize the arm.
  • Wrap an elasticized bandage over a felt pad on the injured area. Keep the area compressed for about 72 hours.
  • Continue Ice massage. Fill a large Styrofoam cup with water and freeze. Tear a small amount of foam from the top so ice protrudes. Massage gently over the injured area in a circle about the size of a softball. Do this for 15 minutes at a one, 3 or 4 times a day, and before workouts or competition.
  • After 72 hours, apply heat instead of ice if it feels better. Use heat lamps, hot soaks, hot showers, heating pads, heat liniments or ointments, or whirlpool treatments.
  • Massage gently and often to provide comfort and decrease swelling.

Home Diet

During recovery, eat a well-balanced diet that includes extra protein, such as meat, fish, poultry, cheese, milk and eggs. Your doctor may prescribe vitamin and mineral supplements to promote healing.

Prevention

Wear appropriate protective gear and equipment during competition or other athletic activity if you have had a recent contusion or the activity makes a contusion likely.

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