What Is the Extra Skin on the Elbow Called?


On everyone’s elbow, there is a small bit of skin on the point, or tip, of the elbow. If you were talking to a medical professional, they would likely call that patch of skin olecranon skin, because it’s directly below the olecranon bursa. However, the more widely used term for this bit of skin is “wenis.” It is a slang term that is not related to any type of medical terminology. Read on to learn more about the olecranon skin and olecranon bursa as well as other information about the elbow.

What Is the Olecranon Bursa?

The bony tip of the elbow is called the olecranon. Directly above it is a fluid-filled sac that helps prevent damage to this bony tip. Bursae are located throughout the body, often where joints are. These fluid-filled sacs help prevent friction between soft tissue, such as ligaments, and the bone itself. The tiny bit of extra skin you can feel when you fully extend your arm is olecranon skin, because of its placement.

What Are the Issues That Affect the Olecranon and Its Skin?h

One of the most common problems with olecranon skin is dryness or rash. Because bursae can often become irritated or inflamed because of too much friction, common problems at the olecranon bursa include elbow bursitis, also known as miner’s elbow. This part of the elbow can also suffer from gout. Other common elbow problems unrelated to the olecranon are tennis elbow or cubital tunnel syndrome. 

What Are the Causes of Dry Elbow Skin?

Having dry olecranon skin is very common, especially in winter. It may just be a case of dry skin. You may also be using soap that is drying your skin out. Additionally, chlorine can be a culprit of dry skin if you’re a swimmer, particularly at the elbow. Skin conditions like psoriasis or eczema can also cause dry olecranon skin.

How Do You Treat Dry Elbow Skin?

The best way to treat dry elbow skin is to find out what’s causing the problem. Of course, many people get dry skin in winter. Change your shower soap or body wash if it seems to cause dryness. Also, moisturizing is essential. Look for a moisturizer that has a base of cocoa butter, olive oil, petroleum jelly, or coconut oil. If you find that dryness persists even after moisturizing the area, it’s a good idea to contact your physician or dermatologist. 

What Can Cause Elbow Rash?

Dermatitis herpetiformis is a common reason for a rash around the elbow, especially around the olecranon skin. In addition to the elbow, you may also see a wrash around the knees, scalp, back, or buttocks. A rash may have many different causes, and you should contact your doctor immediately should you see this level of skin irritation. Specifically, dermatitis herpetiformis occurs because of an intolerance to gluten. However, it is different from celiac disease. If there is a diagnosis of dermatitis herpetiformis, the first-line treatment is to stick to a gluten-free diet. 

What Is Elbow Bursitis

Elbow bursitise is caused by irritation or inflammation of the olecranon bursa. This can be caused by several factors, such as trauma, infection, pressure, or gout. Symptoms of this condition include swelling and pain to the touch. The area may also be hot, red, or both. Most often, a physician would advise a change in physical activity as well as anti-inflammatory pain medication to relieve pain.