What is Mousing Elbow?

Article Details
  • Written By: Malcolm Tatum
  • Edited By: Bronwyn Harris
  • Last Modified Date: 03 January 2020
  • Copyright Protected:
    Conjecture Corporation
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Sometimes considered to be similar to tennis elbow, the condition of mousing elbow has to do with the repetitive stress that is placed on hand, arm, and elbow that is employed in working a computer mouse. The act of using a mouse, known simply as mousing, can result in elbow pain that includes soreness, difficulty in bending the joint, and even the collection of fluid in some extreme cases.

Since the advent of the desktop computer in both the workplace and the home, the incidence of mousing elbow has become increasingly common. For the most part, the condition is due to the failure to provide sufficient support for the elbow during prolonged sessions on the computer. The strain of holding the elbow in the same position for extended periods of time create most of the complaints associated with mousing elbow. Often, the condition is present for some time before it grows painful enough for the individual to realize there is a problem.


The incidence of repetitive stress injuries, or RSI as they are commonly known, often means the implementation of changes in order to minimize or eliminate the amount of stress that is placed upon the joints. In the case of mousing elbow, this means employing some changes in behavior in order to contain the condition. This can begin with the use of an ergonomic mouse, which will cut down on the amount of awkward angle that the elbow is kept at during longer periods using the computer.

Some other basic tips can help to reduce the problem of mousing elbow. One solution is to take a short break during each hour of time spent at the computer. Usually, five minutes of rest each hour will help the situation significantly. Adjusting the angle of posture so that the elbow can rest on something, such as the top of the desk or the arm of the chair, will also help to eliminate some of the stress on the elbow. If all else fails, perhaps changing from the use of a mouse to utilizing a trackball to move the cursor around the screen would be in order.



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