Tennis Elbow

Posted on: May 7th, 2017 by The Physio Movement | Categories: Sports Medicine & Nutrition

Lateral epicondyalgia or more simply known as “tennis elbow” can be a debilitating, nuisance of a condition. Acute tennis elbow is an injury to the musculotendinous region of the muscles that extend the wrist and fingers. The site of pain is typically the lateral epicondyle, a bony bump you can feel on the outside of the elbow where the muscles attach.

Tennis elbow symptoms that have lasted more than 6 weeks are considered to be sub-acute and beyond 3 months is known as chronic tennis elbow.

Typically the tennis elbow sufferer will experience pain when performing gripping tasks or resisted wrist/finger extension. Pain can also be present when the muscles are stretched. There will be tenderness directly over the bony epicondyle, and there may be tender, tight trigger points in the wrist muscles.

Some sufferers will also have neck stiffness and tenderness, as well as signs of nerve irritation. Most elbow movements will be pain-free, despite that being the area of pain.

Common causes include unaccustomed hand use (painting a fence, hammering, lots of typing), excessive gripping or wringing activities, poor forearm muscle strength or tight muscles, poor technique (poor tennis shot).

Chronic tennis elbow is associated with degenerative changes in the muscle tissues located at the epicondyle. Although for a long time this was thought to be related to inflammation from overuse, this is now known to be incorrect.

Untreated tennis elbow can last anywhere from 6 months to 2 years! You are also prone to recurrence. Evidence has shown physiotherapy to be the most effective way of managing tennis elbow when compared to steroid injections or giving advice alone.

So if you’ve either got some new elbow pain or an old niggling tennis elbow stop living in pain and get back to what you love most!


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