"Tennis elbow" is a common term for a condition caused by overuse of arm, forearm, and hand muscles that results in elbow pain. You don't have to play tennis to get this, but the term came into use because it can be a significant problem for some tennis players.
Tennis elbow is caused by either abrupt or subtle injury of the muscle and tendon area around the outside of the elbow. Tennis elbow specifically involves the area where the muscles and tendons of the forearm attach to the outside bony area (called the lateral epicondyle) of the elbow.
Tennis elbow most commonly affects people in their dominant arm (that is, a right-handed person would experience pain in the right arm), but it can also occur in the non-dominant arm or both arms.
Symptoms of tennis elbow include:
- Pain slowly increasing around the outside of the elbow. Less often, pain may develop suddenly.
- Pain is worse when shaking hands or squeezing objects.
- Pain is made worse by stabilizing or moving the wrist with force. Examples include lifting, using tools, opening jars, or even handling simple utensils such as a toothbrush or knife and fork.
Tennis elbow symptoms are successfully treated with physical therapy. Electric stimulation, ultrasound therapy, myofascial release, and stretching and strengthening exercises are the most commonly performed treatments by a physical therapist.
The goals of treatment are to reduce pain or inflammation, promote healing, and decrease stress and abuse on the injured elbow.
Please call our office to set up a free consultation with one of our physical therapists or doctors to discuss your condition. We treat a wide variety of musculoskeletal symptoms, including tennis elbow.
Albany Chiropractic & Physical Therapy (518) 869-3884