Even if you have never played a single game of tennis in your life, you may still be susceptible to developing tennis elbow – which is pain and inflammation in the outer side of the elbow. You may develop this condition if you tend to perform repetitive overhand motions or even if you frequently engage in aggressive video gaming. The condition was named for tennis players who grip their racquet too tightly.
In some cases, if a person stops the activity that caused the injury, it can get better on its own. If the condition lingers and regular over-the-counter pain relievers are not helping any longer, then it is time to go see an orthopedist who specializes in treating the elbows or the arm.
Treating Tennis Elbow with Physical Therapy
If your elbow pain is actually caused by playing tennis, the orthopedist may recommend that you see a physical therapist. The therapist will evaluate the current mechanics of your swing and show you alternative ways in which you can perform the swinging motion. What tends to happen with tennis players is that they put all of the force in one spot, but it would be much better if they used more of their arm to complete the swing.
If the elbow pain is due to a movement you are frequently performing while completing your work, an occupational therapist can help you correct those movements. As with tennis players who have this condition, you are placing too much pressure on certain tendons in your elbow area.
A physical therapist or occupational therapist can teach you exercises that will gradually stretch and strengthen those muscles in the arm, especially in the forearm. You may be asked to wear a forearm strap or brace in order to reduce the forces that are pulling on the elbow.
Treating Tennis Elbow Pain via an Orthopedic Physician
Your orthopedist may recommend in-office corticosteroid injections to the elbow. This minimally invasive treatment can provide effective pain relief for several months.
If you still have painful tennis elbow after 12 months of treatment – via medications, therapy, and revising the way in which you move your elbow – your orthopedic doctor may recommend surgery. This can be done arthroscopically via several tiny incisions in the elbow area.
Elbow Surgeon in Maryland
If you or someone you know suffers from chronic elbow pain and you are in or near Maryland, the medical staff at Greater Chesapeake Hand to Shoulder has a large team of orthopedic surgeons who can diagnose and treat your elbow pain efficiently and effectively. Our sports medicine physicians treat musculoskeletal conditions of all kinds, including golfer’s elbow and pitcher’s elbow.
We have a number of offices across the state for the convenience of our patients, and one of them is sure to be within easy driving distance for you. We look forward to seeing you here.
Contact our friendly staff today by calling us at (410) 296-6232 or schedule an appointment online via our easy-to-use form, and let us help you get that elbow back to normal again.