Description, Causes and Risk Factors:
Tennis elbow is a form of tendonitis that causes pain over the bony prominence called the lateral epicondyle on the outside of the elbow. About 5 in 1,000 adults develop tennis elbow each year. It mainly affects people between the ages of 35 and 55. Women and men are affected equally.
Tennis elbow is caused by repetitive stress on the muscles and tendons that are connected to the lateral epicondyle. These muscles extend along the top, or dorsal, side of the forearm to the wrist and are responsible for extending or bending back the wrist and fingers. The tendons are fibrous bands that connect the muscles to the bone, in this case the lateral epicondyle.
If too much stress is placed on these muscles and tendons, micro tears can occur at the site where the tendons attach to the lateral epicondyle. These micro tears cause pain that is usually localized at the lateral epicondyle but the pain can occasionally radiate down the forearm. Aging appears to make these tendons more prone to breakdown. Therefore, lateral epicondylitis is more common once we get in our fourth decade of life and beyond.
Any repetitive activity that places strain on the muscles of the forearm (particularly the outer muscles) can cause small tears to develop in the tendon fibres. These tears occur at the point where the tendon attaches to the bone and occasionally in the covering of the bone (the periosteum). The tears cause the tendons and muscles to become inflamed, producing pain. Activities that can cause to tennis elbow include:
Hammering (e.g., in carpentry).
Tennis (particularly the backhand swing).
Pain around the outer part of the elbow is the most typical symptom of tennis elbow. The pain is often described as "burning" in nature. The elbow may be painful to touch and the pain may radiate down the forearm. The pain often increases with grasping, gripping, or rotation of the wrist and forearm. Straightening and bending the elbow may also cause pain.
The severity of pain can range from a mild discomfort to severe pain that interferes with sleep. The pain tends to start gradually and worsen over a period of weeks or months.
When the condition is chronic (long-term), weakness of grip may be experienced.
No special tests are needed to makethe diagnosis. This diagnosis is madeby history and physician examinationof the patient. X-rays are not always required whenevaluating a patient with tennis elbowsymptoms, but a doctor may wishto orderthem just to make certainthat the bone structures of the elboware normal.
Like many overuse injuries of sport, there is no sure-fine treatment. Rest itself does not necessarily cure the problem, but it may decrease the pain and allows healing to progress. Decreased activity with the elbow and wrist is generally preferred over absolute rest and complete inactivity. The healing of tennis elbow can take weeks to months. Some physicians believe that the key to healing this overuse injury lies in increasing the circulation to the area while decreasing the tightness of the muscles. Therefore, stretching and strengthening exercises are frequently helpful.
The following exercise may help:
Support the forearm on a flat surface with the wrist and hand free. Hold a 1 to 2 pound weight in the hand. Keeping the palm down, slowly extend the wrist. Bring it backward, or up, and then bend it forward, or down. The muscles on the top of the forearm should contract when the wrist is moved upward and stretch when the hand is moved downward.
Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medications like aspirin, ibuprofen, and ketoprofen, or various prescription drugs can treat the symptoms and may decrease the pain and irritation in and around the tendon. However, it appears unlikely that these medications can actually evoke more rapid healing of the condition.
Icing the joint after activity may also decrease the irritation and relieve the pain.
NOTE: The above information is educational purpose. The information provided herein should not be used during any medical emergency or for the diagnosis or treatment of any medical condition.
DISCLAIMER: This information should not substitute for seeking responsible, professional medical care.
A new study from the US discovers that flavonoids, natural compounds found in fruits and vegetables, may help preserve the lung function, which tends to decline with age. For the study, a team of researchers looked at data from 463 adults from Norway and England whose...
According to a recent study, published in The Journal of Physiology, exercising four to five times per week may help stop the main arteries to the heart from stiffening up. The researchers from the US have found that those who exercise four to five times per week had...
Quiz about this article
0 of 2 questions completed
Please answer on few questions to make our service more useful
You have already completed the quiz before. Hence you can not start it again.
Quiz is loading...
You must sign in or sign up to start the quiz.
You have to finish following quiz, to start this quiz:
0 of 2 questions answered correctly
Time has elapsed
You have reached 0 of 0 points, (0)
Question 1 of 2
Was this article useful for you?Correct
Thanks for your feedback!Incorrect
Thanks for your feedback!
Question 2 of 2
What else information about this disease you want to know ?Correct
Thanks for feedback!Incorrect
Thanks for feedback!
Good weather is the best reason to do outdoor sports, which will help not only lose weight, but also will strengthen health. Bicycle The sun dries out the local paths, so you can safely sit on your favorite bike and confidently twist the pedals, where the eyes look....read more
First aid for injuries consists of simple rules that need to be clearly implemented. If this is a closed injury, you need to immobilize the injured limb, otherwise the person may lose consciousness from a painful shock. If you need to get to the emergency room...read more
Many people spontaneously decide starting to do sport, while others weigh all the pros and cons for a log time. But almost all of them make the same mistakes, listening to the advice of non experts. There are 10 anti-tips for those who want to do plan to do some sport...read more