Tennis elbow is one of the most common repetitive stress injuries, as well as one of the more common elbow conditions that patients experience. Even so, many people do not fully understand tennis elbow or the appropriate treatment options. This article will act as a primer on tennis elbow. We will discuss what causes tennis elbow, and how you can best treat the condition with physical therapy.
What Causes Tennis Elbow?
Tennis elbow is a repetitive stress injury, and can be caused by repeat motions that put stress on the tendons in outside of the elbow. The name comes from the repetitive swinging of a racquet, but in reality the condition can impact anyone who performs routine motions. People who work manual labor jobs (construction workers, carpenters, auto mechanics, etc.) are particularly at risk for tennis elbow.
Tennis elbow is often mistaken for a very similar condition known as golfer’s elbow, which impacts the tendons on the inside of the elbow.
Tennis Elbow Symptoms
Here are a few of the symptoms that may indicate a diagnosis of tennis elbow:
- Pain in the elbow, especially when gripping something, lifting, or raising your hand.
- Tenderness or swelling in the elbow.
- Weakness in the elbow area.
Physical Therapy for Tennis Elbow
Depending on who you ask, there are many different treatment options for tennis elbow – pain medications, injections, surgery, or physical therapy, to name a few. Each patient is different, and treatment plans should be tailored to each individual patient based on their needs. That being said, many of the commonly prescribed treatments for tennis elbow (pain meds, injections, etc.) often only provide temporary symptomatic relief. Physical therapy, by contrast, focuses on the root of the issue and increases range-of-motion in the elbow with strategic stretches and exercises.
OrthoRehab Specialists has been treating patients with tennis elbow for the past twenty five years. Our Minnesota physical therapists offer direct access to physical therapy and also have trusted relationships with physicians and surgeons throughout the Twin Cities. Our rehab specialists partner with patients to ensure that they get the best possible treatment. Contact our Edina or Minneapolis clinics today to set up your physical therapy appointment.