Lateral epicondylitis, commonly known as tennis elbow, is swelling of the tendons that bend your wrist backward away from your palm.
A tendon is a tough cord of tissue that connects muscles to bones. The tendon most likely involved in tennis elbow is called the extensor carpi radialis brevis. Tennis elbow is usually diagnosed in both men and women between the ages of 30 to 50 years.
Tennis elbow, as the name implies, is often caused by the force of the tennis racket hitting balls in the backhand position. Your forearm muscles, which attach to the outside of your elbow, may become sore from excessive strain. When making a backhand stroke in tennis, the tendons that roll over the end of our elbow can become damaged. Tennis elbow may be caused by:
However, many people who suffer from tennis elbow do not play tennis. The problem can be caused by any repetitive movement. Other causes of tennis elbow include:
The following are the most common symptoms of tennis elbow. However, you may experience symptoms differently.
At first, you may have pain, burning, or an ache along the outside of your forearm and elbow. With time, the pain gets worse. If you continue the activity that caused your condition, the pain may spread down to your wrist, even at rest. Pain may also persist when you place your arm and hand palm-down on a table, and then try to raise your hand against resistance. You may also feel pain when you try to lift and grip small objects, such as a coffee cup. A weak grip is another symptom of tennis elbow.
The symptoms of tennis elbow may resemble other medical problems or conditions. Always see your health care provider for a diagnosis.
Your health care provider can usually diagnosis your tennis elbow by a physical exam. In some cases, you may certain tests, such as:
It’s important to avoid the movement that caused your injury in the first place. Treatment may include:
If these treatments do not work, your health care provider may talk to you about:
Tips to help you get the most from a visit to your health care provider:
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