ADHD: A Parenting Guide

4 Treatment Options For Tennis Elbow

Are you suffering from pain in your forearm and the outside of your elbow? If so, you may have tennis elbow. Tennis elbow is an ailment that is common for people who do work with their forearms or who frequently have to grip objects. Although it is very common in tennis players, you don't have to be a tennis player to get it. Tennis elbow can be frustrating, as it can prevent you from performing day-to-day tasks and even from holding objects with your hand. Fortunately, you do have treatment options. Depending on the seriousness of your condition, one or all of the options below may resolve the situation:

Rest and ice: Much of your discomfort likely comes from swelling in the tendon that connects your forearm muscles to the elbow. The best way to relieve that pain is often to rest the tendon. That means using that arm as little as possible, especially when it comes to tasks that involve gripping objects with your hand. You should also ice the tendon several times a day. In mild cases of tennis elbow, the combination of ice and rest may be enough to completely treat the condition.

Physical therapy: Once your pain has died down, you may want to try and strengthen the tendon. That will get your arm back in functional shape and help prevent future incidents of tennis elbow. A physical therapist can show you the stretches that will have the greatest impact. After a few sessions with the therapist, you may be able to complete your therapy at home. 

Steroid injections. If ice, rest, and therapy don't restore your arm's functionality, you may need more serious treatment. One option is to inject steroids directly into the elbow. The steroids help the tendon grow and repair itself. They may also temporarily increase swelling around the elbow, so in the days following the injection, your elbow may actually feel a little worse. A doctor may prescribe several injections over the course of a year, followed by a physical therapy regimen. If your elbow damage is severe enough to require injections, then you may be facing a very long recovery.

Surgery. In the most severe cases of tennis elbow, surgery could be required. During the surgery, the doctor may detach the tendon from the elbow and look for bone spurs or any other damage that may be causing the tendon issues. He or she then will reattach the tendon and immobilizes the elbow during a recovery period. Once the tendon has healed, you would start on a physical therapy, resting, and icing routine. Again, surgery could have a recovery period of several months.

For more information, talk to your orthopedic doctor. They can recommend the best option for your tendon issues. For more information, contact a professional like those at the Hand Rehabilitation Specialists.