What is lateral epicondylalgia?
Lateral epicondylalgia, also known as tennis elbow, is a common overuse injury that affects the tendons on the outside of the elbow. This condition can cause pain and discomfort in the elbow, forearm, and wrist and can make it difficult to perform everyday activities. Lateral epicondylalgia is often caused by repetitive movements of the forearm and wrist, such as those involved in playing tennis or using a computer mouse. These activities can cause small tears or degeneration in the tendons that attach to the lateral epicondyle, a bony bump on the outside of the elbow. Over time, these tears can lead to inflammation, pain, and weakness in the affected arm.
What are the Symptoms?
The most common symptom of lateral epicondylalgia is pain on the outside of the elbow, which can range from mild to severe. The pain may be most noticeable when lifting or gripping objects, or when twisting the forearm. Other symptoms may include weakness in the forearm and wrist, stiffness in the elbow, and difficulty performing everyday activities.
How is Lateral Epicondylalgia Treated?
The treatment of lateral epicondylalgia typically involves a combination of rest, physical therapy, and self-care measures. Resting the affected arm and avoiding activities that aggravate the condition can help to reduce inflammation and promote healing. Physical therapy may include exercises to strengthen the forearm and wrist, as well as stretches to improve flexibility and range of motion. Other treatments may include the use of ice or heat, massage, and the use of braces or supports to reduce strain on the affected tendons.
Is there a way to Prevent Lateral Epicondylalgia?
There are several steps that individuals can take to prevent lateral epicondylalgia, including:
Strengthening the forearm and wrist muscles through exercises such as wrist curls and grip strengtheners
Using proper technique when perform repetitive activities, such as using a computer mouse or playing tennis
Taking regular breaks and stretching during activities that involve repetitive movements
Using proper equipment, such as a properly sized tennis racket or an ergonomic keyboard and mouse
Gradually increasing the intensity and duration of activities to avoid overuse injuries
How can Hybrid Physical Therapy help with Your Recovery?
Lateral epicondylalgia can affect many aspects of our lives, other than simply tennis. It becomes troublesome when simple tasks such as holding a cup of coffee or trying to comb your hair are painful. At Hybrid Physical Therapy, we work to address those deficits that lead to the dysfunction by strengthening and mobilizing the affected tissue. We employ specific exercises and specialized manual techniques to reduce your overall pain. We will also discuss any lifestyle changes that may be necessary to improve your symptoms as well as prevent future issues from occurring.
Let Hybrid Physical Therapy be the ones to guide you to the road to success and optimize your performance.