Tennis elbow is the condition in which the outer part of the elbow becomes sore and tender. The origin of forearm muscles and tendons become damaged with the repetitive use of the wrist and arms which cause an extreme pain. The pain initially starts on the outside of the elbow.
The symptoms of Tennis Elbow includes pain in the outer elbow. Pain increases while gripping or holding anything.
Symptoms also include:
- Difficulty in shaking hands
- Difficulty in turning the doorknob
- Difficulty in holding small objects like a cup
Tennis elbow is caused by the overuse of wrist and arms and muscles strain energy. The repeated motion and stress results in tennis elbow. As the name suggests it is commonly seen in racquet sports players but they are not the only one who goes through this condition. It commonly occurs in IT professionals who have constant and repetitive use of computer mouse and keyboard. And housewives, who repetitively twist clothes to dry and use circular wrist movements for cooking.
- Essentially the mainstay of treatment is rest and to avoid chronic repetitive stressful wrist movements.
- Analgesics and anti-inflammatory medications will help muscles and tendons to recover from the damage.
- Tennis Elbow Brace is a circular band worn 2 cm below the painful area, helps in off-loading the point of origin of muscles. Must be used while playing racquet sports, use of computers or while cooking/working.
- Physiotherapy using ultrasound massage and exercises gives excellent relief from pain and helps in building strength.
- Local infiltrations of steroid are reserved for resistant or recurrent cases. Local infiltrations of PRP (Platelet Rich Plasma) is gaining popularity over steroid injections as PRP is natural and uses patient's own platelets.
- Surgical releases are seldom necessary and reserved for resistant cases wherein all the above methods of treatment have failed.
How to Avoid Tennis Elbow:
1. Correct posture.
2. Correct grip or padding.
3. Correct strength.
4. Exercises your wrist and fingers.
5. Take frequent breaks.