Olecranon Traction Spur


  • Bony spur over the tip of the elbow


  • Tractions spurs are caused by repetitive strain to triceps tendon insertion.


  • Clinical exam will show obvious swelling over the olecranon
  • Plain x-rays are taken to look for any underlying bone or joint problem, or ununited fracture.


  • Non operative measures such as antiflammatories, are sometimes successful.
  • In recalcitrant cases surgical excision is required.
  • Operation usually, general anaesthetic, excision of the spur, with smoothing of the bone.
  • The patient is usually placed in a splint to restrict elbow motion for two to three weeks, or a bulky bandage.

Potential Complications

  • Infection, Haematoma, stiffness
  • Can get recurrence of the spur.
  • The biggest issue is with wound healing

Post-Operative Care

  • Analgesia, Elevation,
  • Back slab for two to three weeks until wound is well healed or bulky bandage.
University Of Auckland Auckland Born Joint Surgery Fracs NZOA  University Of Auckland Auckland Born Joint Surgery Fracs