Sep 19, 2023
Tennis elbow, sometimes referred to as lateral epicondylitis, is an injury that can happen when the muscles and tendons in the elbow are overused. Repeated wrist and arm motions are frequently associated with tennis elbow.
Tennis elbow, despite its name, seldom affects tennis players. Tennis elbow can develop in certain persons due to repetitive movements in the workplace. Some examples of these are butchers, carpenters, painters, and plumbers. Tennis elbow, though, frequently lacks a known cause.
The bony bump on the outside of the elbow, where the forearm muscles' tough, cord-like tissues attach, is where tennis elbow pain is most commonly felt. Tendons are the names of the structures. Forearm and wrist pain may radiate.
Tennis elbow is frequently relieved with rest, painkillers, and physical treatment. A procedure, such as a shot or surgery, may be used for those for whom these treatments are ineffective or who have symptoms that interfere with everyday activities.
Overuse and muscle tension are two factors that frequently contribute to tennis elbow. But it's unclear what caused it. The symptoms can sometimes be brought on by repeatedly tensing the forearm muscles that are used to lift and straighten the hand and wrist. The tendon that connects the forearm muscles to the bony protrusion on the outside of the elbow may break down as a result of this.
Tennis elbow symptoms may result from the following activities:
Tennis elbow can cause discomfort that radiates from the outside of the elbow into the forearm and wrist. A person may find it difficult to:
Tennis elbow risk factors include the following:
Tennis elbow is frequently diagnosed with just a medical history and physical exam. A medical professional may ask you to move your elbow, wrist, and fingers in different directions or press on the injured area during the physical examination.
If a healthcare professional believes anything else may be the cause of the symptoms, X-rays, sonograms, or other imaging procedures may be required.
Tennis elbow frequently gets better by itself. However, physical therapy might be the next option if painkillers and other self-care techniques are ineffective. Tennis elbow that doesn't heal with previous treatments may benefit from surgery or an injection.
An expert may examine your tennis play, work performance, or equipment if your symptoms are linked to playing tennis or doing professional activities. To decrease stress on damaged tissue, the optimal methods must be found.
Exercises to build up the muscles and tendons of the forearm can be taught by a physical, occupational, or hand therapist. A brace or band around the forearm could ease pressure on the damaged tissue.
Shots. Tennis elbow is treated by administering various injections to the damaged tendon. Platelet-rich plasma and corticosteroids are some of them. Less often used options include prolotherapy and botulinum toxin A (Botox), which is an irritating solution made of either sugar water or salt water.
Additionally beneficial is dry needling, which involves carefully piercing the injured tendon numerous times with a needle.
Alternatively, arthroscopic surgery, which uses multiple tiny holes, is an option. Exercises to regain strength and use of the elbow are essential to recovery, regardless of the course of treatment.
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