What Is a Tennis Elbow?

What Is a Tennis Elbow?

If you feel pain around the outside of your elbow, you may suffer from a condition called tennis elbow. Don’t let the name trick you, as only around 5% of people with this condition have actually developed it from playing tennis.

This condition is relatively common, and it usually only requires a minor treatment. However, you’ll probably need some rest to heal. Read on to discover the most common causes of tennis elbow and what you can do to treat it.

What Are The Symptoms of the Tennis Elbow?

The most common symptom of the tennis elbow is a pain located on the outside of your elbow that may radiate into your forearm. Sometimes it is so intense that it reaches the wrist. 

In addition to pain, people with tennis elbow usually feel weakness in the affected arm. They may have trouble with certain positions and motions like holding something, turning a doorknob, shaking hands, or maintaining a grip around an object.

You may also experience redness, swelling, and a small lump in your elbow.

What Causes the Tennis Elbow?

Tennis elbow is a common injury, and it affects around 3% of the general population. Although it can appear at any age, middle-aged individuals are at a higher risk.

The most common cause for this condition is a repetitive arm movement that causes stress on the muscles and tendons around your elbow. The repetitive stress causes small tears in the tissues, which result in discomfort and pain if left untreated.

You can get tennis elbow by playing other racquet sports besides tennis, such as racquetball or squash. However, more common causes include physical jobs requiring repetitive arm motions, such as:

  • Plumbing
  • Carpentry
  • Painting
  • Gardening
  • Playing certain musical instruments
  • Auto mechanics
  • Working on an assembly line

In addition, tennis elbow may result from a direct blow to the area, an awkward fall, or some other injury.

When to See a Doctor?

People usually use over-the-counter pain medication combined with rest and ice to ease their elbow pain. And in most cases, this will be enough. However, if your symptoms persist for longer than a week or your pain seems to get worse, you should call a doctor.

You should visit a professional right away if you see a rash, swelling, or a lump in the affected area. Remember, if the pain is preventing you from doing everyday tasks, you should address it right away.

How Is Tennis Elbow Treated?

The treatment depends on the severity of your injury. You will have to restrain from the activity that’s causing stress on your elbow. In addition, your doctor may suggest physical therapy, pain medications, corticosteroid injections, ultrasound treatments, platelet-rich plasma, and surgery if other conservative measures fail.

Luckily, 95% of people get better without surgery, so you don’t have to worry about that.

Where to Get Adequate Tennis Elbow Treatment?

If you are struggling with elbow pain and suspect you may have a tennis elbow, it is vital to seek professional assistance. At the Joint & Spine Center, you can get adequate help from Dr. Jeffrey Pruski and his team. We use innovative chiropractic services to help people overcome their conditions and relieve pain. Click here to schedule an appointment and get the help you need.

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