Tennis Elbow (lateral epicondylitis) is a painful condition that occurs when tendons in your elbow are overloaded, usually by repetitive motions of the wrist and arm.
Despite its name, athletes aren’t the only people who develop Tennis Elbow. People whose jobs feature the types of motions that can lead to Tennis Elbow include plumbers, painters,
carpenters and butchers.
The pain associated with Tennis Elbow may radiate from the outside of your elbow into your forearm and wrist. Pain and weakness may make it difficult to:
• Shake hands or grip an object
• Turn a doorknob
• Hold a coffee cup
Tennis Elbow is an overuse and muscle strain injury. The cause is repeated contraction of the forearm muscles that you use to straighten and raise your hand and wrist. The repeated motions and stress to the tissue may result in a series of tiny tears in the tendons that attach the forearm muscles to the bony prominence at the outside of your elbow.
Factors that may increase your risk of Tennis Elbow include:
• Age. While Tennis Elbow affects people of all ages, it's most common in adults between the ages of 30 and 50.
• Occupation. People who have jobs that involve repetitive motions of the wrist and arm are more likely to develop Tennis Elbow. Examples include plumbers, painters, carpenters, butchers and cooks.
• Certain sports. Participating in racket sports increases your risk of Tennis Elbow, especially if you employ poor stroke technique.
Treatment / Therapy
• Treatment and an exercise plan from a qualified physical therapist.
• Corticosteroid, platelet-rich plasma, prolotherapy.
If your symptoms haven’t improved after six to 12 months of extensive non-operative treatment, you may be a candidate for surgery to remove damaged tissue. These types of procedures can be performed through a large incision or through several small incisions. Rehabilitation exercises are crucial to recovery.
Lifestyle and home remedies
• Rest. Avoid activities that aggravate your elbow pain.
• Pain relievers. Try over-the-counter pain relievers, such as ibuprofen.
• Ice. Apply ice or a cold pack for 15 minutes three to four times a day.
• Technique. Make sure that you are using proper technique for your activities and avoiding repetitive wrist motions.