The Quad City Area’s Only Group of All Board-Certified
Fellowship-Trained Orthopaedic Surgeons

The Quad City Area’s Only Group of All Board-Certified
Fellowship-Trained Orthopaedic Surgeons

Arm Pump Surgery

Quad Cities Orthopaedic Surgeon Discusses Minimally Invasive Arm Pump Surgery

Dr. Cobb discusses arm pump surgery.

Dr. Tyson Cobb of Orthopaedic Specialists, PC explains how chronic exertional compartment syndrome (CECS) can be especially dangerous for motocross racers and how arm pump surgery can address this condition.

Davenport, IA — Chronic exertional compartment syndrome, or CECS, is a muscle and nerve condition that typically occurs as a result of repetitive stress through athletic exertion. Dr. Tyson Cobb, an orthopaedic surgeon in the Quad Cities area, explains that CECS may develop in the forearms of competitive motocross riders, who are then at greater risk of crashing as a result of the symptoms. He says this concern, colloquially known as “arm pump,” can often be addressed with a surgical procedure that offers excellent results without the need for the patient to give up the sport.

Arm pump, Dr. Cobb explains, causes a wide range of side effects, including severe pain, swelling, numbness, cramping, and weakness in the forearms. As a result, he says riders with this condition may have a reduced ability to brake, shift gears, or otherwise operate their bikes effectively. Non-surgical treatments for CECS are available, but the Quad Cities area surgeon says that they require rest and behavior modification—something many professional athletes cannot do without losing their ranking.

Dr. Cobb says arm pump surgery is commonly recommended to treat CECS of the arms for multiple reasons, one of which is the potential for the patient to regain full function and improved performance in competitions. He says successful surgery also means that riders should be able to return to racing. Minimally invasive techniques, he adds, can also help to reduce recovery time with most patients returning to riding within a week or two after surgery.

Arm pump surgery typically involves fasciotomy, which opens up the fascia (the inelastic tissue that surrounds each compartment of muscle) to reduce pressure on the affected muscles and nerves.

Dr. Cobb emphasizes that arm pump surgery is not for everyone, and that a patient experiencing the symptoms of CECS should discuss their concerns with a qualified physician. He says a thorough evaluation will be necessary to develop a customized treatment plan that best suits the individual’s needs, goals, and athletic activities.

About Tyson Cobb, MD
The Director of the Hand and Upper Extremity Center at Orthopaedic Specialists, PC, Dr. Tyson Cobb is certified by the American Board of Orthopaedic Surgery. He earned his medical degree from the Texas Tech School of Medicine, after which he completed a five-year orthopaedic residency at the Mayo Clinic. Dr. Cobb also completed a Fellowship in Hand and Microvascular Surgery at the University of Texas. A member of several prestigious medical organizations, Dr. Cobb is also considered a pioneer in minimally invasive orthopaedic techniques. He is available for interview upon request.

For more information about Dr. Cobb and his practice, please visit and


Orthopaedic Specialists, PC
Davenport Office:
3385 Dexter Ct.
Davenport, IA 52807
(563) 344-9292

Bettendorf Office:
4480 Utica Ridge Rd., Ste. 2240
Bettendorf, IA 52722
(563) 344-9292

Clinton Office:
2635 US 30
Clinton, IA 52732
(563) 243-4170

Rosemont Media
(858) 200-0044

How Can Athletes Treat “Arm Pump”?

Arm pump, medically known as chronic exertional compartment syndrome (CECS), is a condition that can affect many types of athletes. Some of the individuals most commonly affected, however, are motocross racers. Arm pump causes cramping, severe pain, burning, weakness, numbness, and other symptoms that can make riding difficult and dangerous. While non-surgical treatment can be helpful for many, this approach requires rest and behavior modifications that may not be a suitable option for professional athletes. In many cases, arm pump surgery is recommended. Our Director of the Hand and Upper Extremity Center, Dr. Tyson Cobb, utilizes the most advanced techniques available to address CECS—most often with excellent results. He recently treated Zach Osborne, a competitive motocross racer whose arm pump symptoms were affecting his ability to compete.

Arm pump surgery is designed to release pressure on the affected muscle compartments in the forearm. This can be achieved by dividing (cutting) the fascia that encases the muscles in the forearm. The fascia is a thick, fibrous tissue that wraps around every muscle compartment in the body. Once this tissue is opened up, the nerves, arteries, and muscles have more freedom of movement, which in turn minimizes pain, swelling, and other symptoms of CECS. Dr. Cobb is extensively trained in minimally invasive techniques that can help to reduce the risk of complications and shorten recovery time. Many athletes who have had this procedure have successfully healed and returned to performing at their highest levels.

Arm pump surgery is not for everyone. If you believe you have arm pump or you are experiencing pain in your forearm, we recommend you speak to a qualified orthopaedic surgeon like Dr. Cobb to determine the best treatment plan. Click here to learn more about Arm Pump Surgery.

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