Despite being named after the particular sport, tennis elbow is surprisingly rarely encountered in tennis players. The condition is however commonly encountered in practice. It’s seen more often in musicians, gardeners and tradesmen or DIY enthusiasts. The condition results from an irritation to the outer aspect of the elbow due to an irritation to the tendons of the muscles of the forearm.
The condition can be diagnosed by a chartered physiotherapist, who can help you to recover from it. Diagnosis is made through examination, palpation and stressing of the involved tendons. Pain on the outer aspect of the elbow which is made worse by resisting wrist extension provides a clue to the diagnosis.
After a diagnosis is made a combination of stretching and strengthening provides a relatively speedy recovery. Manual therapy such as cross friction massage across the affected tendons and deep tissue work to the forearm muscles are other key components in the recovery of the condition. The patient’s home exercise programme will commonly require an element of eccentric wrist extensor loading.
Since tennis elbow can reoccur, it’s vital, as part of a comprehensive rehabilitation programme, that underlying factors causing the condition are thoroughly addressed prior to the patient being discharged.