Your friendly Chiropractor in Chandler AZ, Dr. Dan Rae, is back at the computer during my lunch to write about a topic we have all heard about. In fact, when we think of Elbow Pain, the first thing we think about is Tennis Elbow, also know as Lateral Epicondylitis. Today, I will be explaining what Tennis Elbow is, how we get it, and how we go about treating it.
There are many different theories out there as to what is the cause of Tennis Elbow; however, the theory that currently has the most backing right now is that initially there is a tearing of the extensor carpi radialis brevis at its origin. There also may be some tearing in the extensor digitorum communis or the extensor carpi radialis longus. All of these muscles have a primary responsibility of extending the wrist back, and a secondary responsibility of flexing or bending the elbow. Repetitive movements that require forceful extension of the wrist, radial deviation (moving the wrist toward the thumb), and supination (holding the hand in a cupping position) are the most common causes. Although it has been linked to tennis, other sports and occupational activities are also causes. Meat cutters, plumbers, carpenters, and others with similar jobs requirements are all affected. With tennis, beginning players with poor backhand technique account for the majority of all cases. With professional players, the forehand or serving are generally the cause. The more frequent the individual plays, the higher risk they have of developing this injury.
In the acute cases, ice and rest from activities causing the discomfort. Use of a splint on the wrist at 30-45 degrees of extension may be required to impose rest to relieve the tension on the extensor carpi radialis brevis. This can also be done with Kinesiology Tape. Myofascial release techniques such as Active Release Technique (ART) and Graston Technique are very effective to encourage healing and prevent scar tissue formation. Mobilization of the wrist has proven to be very effective as well.
If you are struggling with Tennis Elbow or any other Elbow Pain, contact my office today (480) 366-4041. We can Help!