Blockers Exostosis – 6 Important Symptoms, Prevention, Treatment and Care Instructions

What is Blockers Exostosis

  • Blockers exostosis is condition resulting from an extra bone growth in the arm bone.
  • The arm bone is medically called as humerus.

What is meant by an exostosis?

  • The word “Exostosis” means an extra bone growth.
  • An exostosis is a bony outgrowth or projection that develops on the surface of a bone. It is also commonly referred to as a bone spur. Exostoses can occur in various locations in the body, including the long bones, flat bones, and joints. They are typically composed of normal bone tissue and can vary in size and shape.
  • Numerous circumstances, such as trauma, persistent irritation, inflammation, or a hereditary predisposition, can lead to the development of exostoses. Additionally, they may be linked to specific ailments like Paget’s disease, osteoarthritis, or hereditary multiple exostoses, a genetic disorder marked by the occurrence of many exostoses.
  • Exostoses frequently show no symptoms and are only accidentally found during imaging tests. On the other hand, symptoms including discomfort, limited range of motion, joint stiffness, nerve compression, or soft tissue irritation may result from them, depending on their size, position, and closeness to surrounding tissues.

Why does Blockers exostosis develop?

  • This condition commonly develops due to deposition of bone in the muscle of the upper arm which is the most common site

Why the name Blockers Exostosis?

  • The name Blockers Exostosis came from the high incidence of the injury in American Football defensive blockers. They usually suffer blows to the arm. 
  • This is usually caused by injury to the upper arm.

Blockers exostosis is commonly seen in football players.

This disorder most commonly results from direct blows

What is the most common site?

Usually the sites of repeated injury are the most common sites of the Blockers exostosis

Synonyms of Blockers Exostosis

There are two synonyms of Blockers Exostosis

  • Arm exostosis
  • Tackler’s spur

What increases the risk?

The following factors may make you more likely to develop this condition:

  • Participating in sports or activities that involve forceful contact on your arms, such as football, rugby, or martial arts.
  • Having a bleeding disorder.
  • Having a bone disease or joint disease.
  • Having poor muscle strength or conditioning.
  • Lacking a certain vitamin or mineral (having a deficiency).
  • Being an older athlete.

What are the causes of Blockers Exostosis?

This condition may be caused by:

  • A severe, direct hit, usually a blow or injury to the upper arm.
  • Repeated small injuries to the same area of the upper arm over time.

A common cause of this condition is repeated impact of a football helmet against the arm of a football player.

What are the signs or symptoms of Blockers Exostosis ?

In some cases, there may be no symptoms of this condition. Possible symptoms include:

  1. Pain and swelling. Pain is common at the site of exostosis. This pain may get worse when pressure is applied to the area or gets aggravated if there is a minor injury.
  2. Stiffness in the shoulder or elbow.
  3. Bruising or discoloration. Skin in the affected area may turn red, purple, or yellow. This bruising may happen with repeated injuries
  4. A lump or a swelling that you can feel if you push on the affected area.
  5. Numbness, tingling, or decreased blood flow in your arm and hand. This is rare.
  6. When there is a break in this exostosis, a movable piece may be felt within the arm

How is this diagnosed?

Blockers Exostosis may be diagnosed as below

  • Based on the symptoms of the affected
  • The medical history of the affected
  • A physical examination
  • Imaging tests. It may take up to 4 weeks for the exostosis to be visible on these tests. Imaging tests may include:

How is Blockers Exostosis treated?

Treatment is not required if you have no symptoms

Treatment for this condition depends on the severity.

If you do have symptoms, treatment may include:

  • Resting the injured area. This may include stopping any sports and physical activity for 2–4 weeks.
  • Icing the injured area.
  • Medicines that help to relieve pain and inflammation.
  • Physical therapy.
  • Injections of medicines that help to reduce inflammation (cortisone).
  • Surgery to remove the exostosis. This is rarely done.

General instructions

  • Take OTC and prescription medicines only as told by your health care provider.
  • Do not use any tobacco products, such as cigarettes, chewing tobacco, or e-cigarettes. Tobacco can delay bone healing. If you need help quitting, ask your health care provider.
  • Keep all follow-up visits as told by your health care provider. This is important.


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