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WHAT IS TENNIS ELBOW??

Tennis elbow, or lateral epicondylitis, is a painful condition of the elbow caused by overuse. Not surprisingly, playing tennis or other racquet sports can cause this condition. But several other sports and activities can also put you at risk.

Tennis elbow is an inflammation of the tendons that join the forearm muscles on the outside of the elbow. The forearm muscles and tendons become damaged from overuse — repeating the same motions again and again. This leads to pain and tenderness on the outside of the elbow.

There are many treatment options for tennis elbow. In most cases, treatment involves a team

CAUSE

Overuse

Recent studies show that tennis elbow is often due to damage to a specific forearm muscle. The extensor carpi radialis brevis (ECRB) muscle helps stabilize the wrist when the elbow is straight. This occurs during a tennis groundstroke, for example. When the ECRB is weakened from overuse, microscopic tears form in the tendon where it attaches to the lateral epicondyle. This leads to inflammation and pain.

The ECRB may also be at increased risk for damage because of its position. As the elbow bends and straightens, the muscle rubs against bony bumps. This can cause gradual wear and tear of the muscle over time.

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Activities

Athletes are not the only people who get tennis elbow. Many people with tennis elbow participate in work or recreational activities that require repetitive and vigorous use of the forearm muscle.

Painters, plumbers, and carpenters are particularly prone to developing tennis elbow. Studies have shown that auto workers, cooks, and even butchers get tennis elbow more often than the rest of the population. It is thought that the repetition and weight lifting required in these occupations leads to injury.

Age

Most people who get tennis elbow are between the ages of 30 and 50, although anyone can get tennis elbow if they have the risk factors. In racquet sports like tennis, improper stroke technique and improper equipment may be risk factors.

Unknown

Lateral epicondylitis can occur without any recognized repetitive injury

SIGN AND SYMPTOM

  • Pain on the outer part of the elbow (lateral epicondyle)
  • Point tenderness over the lateral epicondyle—a prominent part of the bone on the outside of the elbow
  • Pain from gripping and movements of the wrist, especially wrist extension[citation needed] and lifting movements
  • Pain from activities that use the muscles that extend[citation needed] the wrist (e.g., pouring a container of liquid, lifting with the palm down)
  • Morning stiffness

Symptoms associated with tennis elbow include, but are not limited to: radiating pain from the outside of the elbow to the forearm and wrist, pain during extension of wrist, weakness of the forearm, a painful grip while shaking hands or torquing a doorknob, and not being able to hold relatively heavy items in the hand. The pain is similar to the condition known as golfer’s elbow, but the latter occurs at the medial side of the elbow.[

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PHYSIOTHERAPY MANAGEMENT

There are several different types of physical therapy. Some examples include:

  • Learning new techniques and using different equipment for activities to help prevent further injury
  • Ultrasound applied over the tender area is commonly recommended, although there is little evidence to support its use. The theory is that this deep heat increases blood flow and tissue flexibility, and may decrease pain and muscle spasms. (Therapists don’t often use ultrasound therapy on children.)
  • Electrical stimulation, or transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (TENS), which involves a mild electrical current that travels through electrodes placed at nerve trigger points. The objective is to mask pain signals sent by the brain to the body. Its effectiveness has not been proven.
  • Massage over an inflamed area, which may reduce the formation of scar tissue and help new blood vessels grow in the damaged tissue. Massage is done by making small, firm circles over the injured area. It should not be painful and may be helpful before and after exercises.
  • Manual therapy (sometimes called body work) uses just the hands to cause relaxation, lessen pain, and increase flexibility. Besides massage, manual therapy includes manipulation to position joints and bones. Mobilization is another form of manual therapy. The therapist uses slow, careful movements to twist, pull, or push bones and joints into position.
  •  Exercise :

Exercises for tennis elbow

 

 

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