You'll often hear of people being diagnosed with Tennis Elbow but what exactly is it?
Tennis Elbow or Lateral Epicondylitis is an injury to the muscles of the wrist and forearm that attach to the lateral epicondyle, a bony bump on the outside of the elbow. It is a condition usually associated with overuse and is not necessarily tennis related!
What are the Symptoms?
Pain on the outside of the elbow which may radiate down towards the forearm and wrist.
Pain which is aggravated by gripping activities or when extending the wrist (i.e. moving the back of your hand towards the forearm).
Pain may be present when the forearm muscles are stretched.
What causes Tennis Elbow?
As mentioned above, tennis elbow is a usually caused by overuse of the muscles responsible for bending and straightening the wrist and hand.
It can be caused by:
Activities which involve repetitive use of the forearm muscles e.g. gardening, painting, gripping
Poor technique when using hand/forearm
Poor posture e.g. when using computer keyboard or mouse
Weakness or muscle tightness around the forearm
Tennis elbow commonly occurs in people aged between 35-55 years of age but does occur in other age groups too.
How is Tennis Elbow Diagnosed?
Your physiotherapist can diagnose your with tennis elbow based on your clinical history, symptoms and a physical examination. An X-ray, MRI or US is not usually required.
How is Tennis Elbow Treated?
Tennis Elbow is often a chronic condition and can last for several months. If untreated, symptoms can last from 6 months to 2 years. Physiotherapy is effective in the short and long term management of Tennis Elbow.
Initial treatment involes:
Relative rest (i.e. avoiding the aggravatomg activities)
Your physiotherapy will then prescribe a management plan that may consist of:
Exercises to stretch the muscles of your forearm
Exercises to strengthen the muscle of your forearm
Taping or fitting of a brace
Posture correction advice
Assessment and treatment of neck and elbow joints
If we can help you with any of your quereies regarding tennis elbow, please feel free to contact us:
Phone: 9553 8145
Or if you're in the area, drop on by and have a chat with us to see if we can help in any way. We're located at 1/45 Montgomery St, Kogarah NSW 2217.
Our physiotherapists are trained to recognise, assess and treat patients that are suffering from vertigo from a vestibular origin such as Benign Paroxysmal Positional Vertigo (BPPV), vestibular neuronitis/labyrinthitis and following acoustic neuroma resection.