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Tennis Elbow

Tennis Elbow

Tennis Elbow

WHO?

• Desk workers
• Musicians
• Sportsman eg. Tennis players!, badminton, water skiers etc.
• Gym junkies
• Manual laborers e.g carpenters, plasterers etc.

WHAT?

Tennis elbow, or lateral epicondylitis as it is known medically, is an overuse injury of the forearm muscles and tendon that attach to a bony bump on the outside of the elbow joint, known as the lateral epicondyle. Pain is most often felt at the elbow and forearm muscles but can also extend down into the hand and fingers. It is mostly commonly aggravated by exercises and activities requiring lots of grip strength and/or repetitive wrist and elbow movements.

WHEN? and HOW?

Tennis elbow is most commonly caused by overuse of the forearm extensor muscles. When these muscles are overstretched or have too much stress placed through them they begin to create micro tears within the common tendon that attaches these muscles to the elbow joint. These micro tears in the tendon create an inflammatory effect which results in pain and discomfort at the elbow and forearm. Pain is most often felt with gripping activities or exercises that require extension of the wrist joint because it is the muscles responsible for these actions that connect to the outside of the elbow. In some cases, patients will also have an underlying component of neck tightness or stiffness which can result in irritation of the nerve that supplies the area around the outside of the elbow joint and forearm.

MANAGEMENT?

To manage tennis elbow your local move forward physiotherapist will assess your elbow, shoulder and neck to determine any factors that may be contributing to your injury. An individualized program and treatment plan will then be prescribed to help reduce the strain on your forearm muscles and tendons in order to best manage your injury and to prevent any ongoing long term pain. A number of techniques may be used throughout your rehabilitation, which may include;
• Deep tissue massage
• Dry needling
• Joint mobilisations
• Stretching exercises
• Strengthening exercises can be incorporated into a Pilates program at both our Quinns Physiotherapy and Jindalee Physiotherapy Move Forward practices.
• Heat and/or ice
• Taping
• Activity modifications, performed under physio supervision at our Hillarys Physiotherapy, located just next to Whitfords Shopping center within Healthy Life Gym.

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