What Is Tennis Elbow And Its Causes And Treatment

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what is tennis elbow

“Tennis elbow” is an expression that is commonly used to indicate epicondylitis. A disorder is affecting the elbow due to the degeneration of a tendon at its bony insertion on the humeral epicondyle. A small lean is a protrusion at the end of the humerus that is in the elbow. This condition, which causes even very intense pain, is a consequence of tendon overload due to continuous stress on the epicondylar muscles. Those muscles allow the extension of the hand’s wrist and fingers. From this content, you will know what is tennis elbow? So, take your eyes on this blog. 

What is tennis elbow, and how does it work?

Epicondylitis is particular tendinopathy affecting the extensor tendons of the wrist and fingers. L’ inflammation arises when the tendons that fit lateral humeral epicondyle at the elbow undergo degeneration that disrupts the elastic fibers and replaces them with scar fibers. It is a degenerative pathology – if left untreated, it worsens over time – and can be induced by a series of microtraumas or overuses, such as repeated unnatural positions and strains of the arm. 


Epicondylitis causes loss of elasticity of the tendon and, therefore, compromises the wrist and elbow movements. The pain radiates into the arm with every move, even during the most straightforward actions. Due to these characteristics and the tendency to become chronic. 

What are the causes of tennis elbow?

Tennis elbow usually caused by functional overload (i.e., excessive and continued use of the elbow). It, therefore, occurs more frequently in those subjects who. Due to specific sports or work activities, frequently repeat movements involving the elbow, wrist, and hand. They are forced to keep the elbow and arm in an unnatural position for a prolonged time. For example, those who are performing “desk” duties and therefore work on the computer for several hours a day, or waiters, or even mechanics.

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What are the symptoms of tennis elbow?

On the elbow, pain is the most telling symptom of epicondylitis. Initially, the pain confined to the elbow. It occurs when you make extension movements of the wrist or hand against resistance and tends to increase when stimulated through activities that require the involvement of the forearm muscles. If epicondylitis is left untreated, the pain can radiate down the forearm and persist even at rest.

What is tennis elbow, and how is tennis elbow prevented?

To prevent epicondylitis development, it is necessary to minimize the risk factors associated with this condition’s development. Between these:

  • Functional overload of the muscles and tendons of the elbow.
  • Excessive strain related to arm movements, and in particular the elbow.
  • Direct damage (such as incorrect movements or extreme extension of the forearm).


Diagnosis mainly made through palpation of the epicondyle and uses specific tests. Which, if positive, indicates the pathology’s presence. Once the seriousness of the problem established. The approach will. If possible, be conservative. Therefore the specialist will try to avoid surgery as much as possible. Which is not said to have a decisive outcome, and replace it with other treatments.


The therapeutic approach to epicondylitis is generally conservative. It involves anti-inflammatories, physical therapies. Such as laser therapies and focal shockwaves to improve local micro vascularization.

It is crucial to keep the limb at rest. To allow the treatments to be successful, the elbow and wrist must avoid all those movements that cause strain the tendon.

The therapies’ goal is both to increase the elasticity of the tendon and improve the vascularity. In fact, the two aspects are closely related and contribute to the tendon’s ability to move and, therefore, the patient’s pain.

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Some postural advice

Physiotherapy is often essential because it allows recovering the arm’s functionality fully, but above all is the only means available to prevent a recurrence. Following a specific rehabilitation program, careful to avoid excessive effort and repeated movements help correct the repetitive motion that generated the epicondylitis. We especially recommend :

  • Change your habits ;
  • Hold a position to work properly ;
  • Use tools and light from the handle conforms to your hand: in this way, the stress to the tendon are minimal;
  • Alternate the two arms in use in repetitive movements;
  • Keep your wrists straight when lifting something and stiff. By doing this, the larger and more powerful upper forearm muscles will do the work that the smaller and less powerful lower forearm muscles usually do;
  • Strengthen the arm muscles with appropriate stretching exercises to perform at home every day (for example, through an object called PowerBall ).

How to cure tennis elbow

Treatment of epicondylitis largely depends on the degree of severity of the inflammation. Initially, the first and necessary therapy will be rest, in particular the immediate stop to the repetitive activity that has triggered the inflammation, at least up to the regression of symptoms.

The use of a special dynamic brace that holds the limb still and allows the tendons to regenerate can also help.

You opt for a therapy conservative, that, using drugs that leniscano the pain and disinfiammino (to always taken in the prescribed by the doctor to avoid damage), or in the most serious cases, surgery.

Final word

In this phase, if the pain is severe. You can take over-the-counter anti-inflammatories. Both my mouth and for topical use, including ointments and gels. But only when necessary. Even the old grandmother’s remedy of applying ice packs can help. However, in the case of severe inflammation, it is necessary to take the anti-inflammatory in order not to aggravate the situation. I hope now you know now, what is tennis elbow and what its causes. Thanks for growing my knowledge.