A common complaint we encounter at Washington Wellness Center is what’s commonly referred to as tennis elbow. Ironically, this condition called lateral epicondylitis is rarely caused by playing the actual game of tennis. Any repetitive movement of the forearm muscles can cause pain in the forearm or elbow, including repetitive clicking of your computer mouse!
The muscles and tendons associated with the forearm are complex. Forearm tendons attach muscles extending from your fingers and wrist to the bony bump on the outside of the elbow (lateral epicondyle). When these muscles and tendons are strained from repetitive use, small tears in the tendon can cause inflammation resulting in pain.
Although tennis elbow is more common as you age, anyone performing repetitive movements with their arm or elbow is prone to tennis elbow. If you experience pain in your elbow that will not go away with simple remedies like rest, ice and anti-inflammatories, you may be experiencing this common issue.
At Washington Wellness Center, we diagnose lateral epicondylitis through a comprehensive exam. At times, we may refer you for either an X-ray or MRI of the area to rule out either bone or advanced soft tissue issues around the lateral epicondyle.
Once diagnosed, there are several treatment options depending on the severity of your injury. Treatment often includes: rest, ice, electrical stimulation, ultrasound, stretching and corrective exercises. We also use infrared therapy to reduce the soft tissue swelling often associated with tennis elbow.
If you have persistent elbow pain, please give our office a call and set up a consultation with one of our highly trained providers. We look forward to helping you overcome your tennis elbow, even if you don’t know the difference between a backhand or a forehand!