Tennis Elbow in Miami, FL
The Advanced Neuro and Spine Institute specializes in the diagnosis, treatment, and management of orthopedic conditions and diseases such as tennis elbow. Our team of experts delivers the latest advances in personalized, comprehensive care to patients in our conveniently located clinics in Aventura, Kendall, Hialeah, and Fort Lauderdale.
What is Tennis Elbow?
Tennis elbow, or “lateral epicondylitis,” is a painful condition caused by overuse of the elbow and forearm. Playing tennis, or other racquet sports, often causes this condition; however, these are not the only repetitive motion activities that may put you at risk for this condition.
With tennis elbow, there is an inflammation of the tendons that join the forearm muscles on the outside of the elbow. These muscles and tendons become damaged from repetitive stress and overuse, leading to pain, inflammation, and tenderness.
What are the Causes and Symptoms of Tennis Elbow?
Tennis elbow is most often caused by repetitive motion that, over time, damages the ECRB muscle, or the “extensor carpi radialis brevis,” which helps to stabilize the wrist when the elbow is straight, and occurring during a tennis groundstroke, for example. When the muscle becomes damaged from overuse, miniscule tears start to form in the tendon, where the muscle attaches to the lateral epicondyle, causing pain and inflammation.
Athletes are not the only people who suffer from tennis elbow. Many people who participate in occupations or recreational activities that require the repetitive and vigorous use of the forearm muscle, such as house painters, carpenters, and butchers, are particularly prone to developing tennis elbow, due to the repetition and weight lifting required in these occupations.
The symptoms of tennis elbow typically develop gradually, beginning with mild to moderate pain and worsening over weeks and months. Usually, the start of symptoms is not associated with a single recognizable injury.
Symptoms of tennis elbow typically include:
- A sharp burning pain on the outer part of the elbow.
- A weaker grip strength and general weakness in the forearm and hand.
The symptoms of tennis elbow may intensify with increased forearm activity, such as holding a racquet, turning a wrench, or hand sewing. Typically, the dominant arm is most often affected; however, both arms may be affected, depending on the repetitive movement that caused the condition.
How is Tennis Elbow Treated?
A vast majority of patients achieve a successful recovery from tennis elbow with non-surgical treatments. Initially, the patient will be advised to cease the offending activity, giving the arm time to rest. Medications may also be recommended, to reduce pain and swelling.
If you do play tennis or any other racquet sport, it is advisable to have your equipment checked for a proper fit. For example, a more taut, or more loosely strung racquet may reduce forearm stress.
Physical therapy in the form of specific exercises to strengthen the muscles of the forearm may also be recommended, along with other therapies as ultrasound, ice massage, or muscle-stimulating techniques to improve muscle healing.
The temporary use of a brace, centered over the back of the forearm, may also help relieve the symptoms of tennis elbow by allowing the muscles and tendons of the forearm to get necessary rest.
Contact Our Office for a Consultation
If you would like more information on tennis elbow treatment, please contact one of our conveniently located clinics in Aventura, Kendall, Hialeah, and Fort Lauderdale.