Youth Arm Injuries: A Growing Concern in Sports

Many youth, from 8 to 14 years old, are forced from the playing field each year due to either throwing too many pitches or throwing breaking balls at too young of an age. As a result, pitch-count limits and proper rest are being enforced from dugout to dugout.

Doctors and youth baseball organizations are concerned about overuse throwing injuries amongst little leaguers. The number of pitches thrown in a game or over the course of a week is the primary concern. Little League, Inc., has implemented rules that limit the number of pitches a pitcher can throw during a game, depending upon the age of the athlete. It is uncertain as to whether breaking pitches can cause additional harm. Although breaking pitches are not currently banned by Little League, Inc., they are discouraged in young athletes.

"The majority of youth baseball injuries we see are overuse injuries," says Dr. Rajesh Makim, sports medicine expert at Orthopedic Associates of Port Huron. "While organizations implementing rules that limit the number of pitches are a good sign, it is also important to follow the necessary precautions."

Signs to look for:

  • Expression of pain
  • Lack of interest in pitching and throwing
  • Throwing form modification
  • Soreness and swelling in the injured area

Treatment options for a throwing injury include:

  • Resting a player’s throwing arm
  • Using ice to reduce inflammation

Visiting an expert at Orthopedic Associates of Port Huron if symptoms continue.

To consult with one of our doctors at Orthopedic Associates of Port Huron, please call (810) 985-4900 or click on the Appointment Request button.