Tennis Elbow: Causes, Symptoms And Treatment

by Administrator 19. January 2015 13:21

Tennis Elbow is a common orthopedic condition caused as a result of overuse of hand, arm and forearm muscles. In clinical terms, it is referred to as Lateral Epicondylitis and is most commonly seen in people who play tennis or other racquet sports. The condition causes inflammation in the forearm muscles at the exterior part of the elbow. Due to overuse or repetitive movements of the muscles, they are prone to damage and cause intense pain from the elbow down to the wrist.

Causes

  • Playing racquet sports
  • Performing repetitive hand or wrist activities
  • Using plumbing tools
  • Painting
  • Driving screws
  • Gripping something tightly

Symptoms

  • Pain that develops gradually
  • Pain and burning sensation at the exterior of the elbow
  • Weakened grip strength
  • Pain increases while clasping objects or shaking hands
  • Difficulty lifting even light things, like a coffee mug
  • Pain worsens when moving the wrist forcefully

Diagnosis

In order to diagnose Tennis Elbow, the orthopedic doctor physically examines the area that is experiencing pain. He may also put pressure on the affected region or make you move your fingers, wrist and elbow to ascertain the amount of pain. In most cases, a description of your symptoms is enough but for others you may be asked to undergo certain imaging tests such as X-ray or CT scan.

Treatment

The treatment options for Tennis Elbow may include the following:

Non-surgical approach

  • Rest: This is the most important part of the entire treatment process. Give ample rest to your arm, avoiding any activity that puts strain on the muscles. You must completely abstain from participating in sports or lifting weight for several weeks.
  • Anti-Inflammatory Medications: The orthopedic surgeon may also prescribe certain non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medications to reduce pain and inflammation.
  • Physical Therapy: Certain stretching exercises may also help to strengthen the forearm muscles. Ultrasound, applying ice packs or other muscle stimulating techniques may also boost healing.
  • Braces: Wearing a brace placed over the hind of your forearm may also reduce the symptoms of Tennis Elbow. This will provide support and rest to the muscles, thus, allowing them to heal.

Surgical Approach

If the symptoms do not improve after 6 to 12 weeks of initiating the treatment, the orthopedic surgeon may recommend you to undergo surgery. The procedure usually involves removing the sore muscles and attaching the healthy ones to the elbow bone.

For diagnosis and treatment of Tennis Elbow you can consult the orthopedic doctor at OrthoTexas. To schedule an appointment, you can call at (972) 727-9995.

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