tennis Elbow Causes, Symptoms, opinion, and Treatment

Medically Reviewed By : Dr K. Hari Chandana

( Fellowship in Trauma, Fellowship in Pain Management )


Tennis elbow, medically known as side epicondylitis, is a current musculoskeletal condition affecting numerous individuals worldwide. It’s characterized by pain and tenderness in the external part of the elbow, frequently resulting from repetitive arm movements. In this comprehensive companion, we will claw into the colorful aspects of tennis elbow, including its causes, symptoms, opinions, and treatment options.

tennis elbow

Understanding Tennis Elbow

Definition and Medical Term( Side Epicondylitis)

Tenniselbow, or side epicondylitis, is a condition in which the tendons that join the forearm muscles to the outside of the elbow become inflamed or damaged. Despite its name, this condition isn’t limited to tennis players and can affect individuals from all walks of life.

Deconstruction of the Elbow and Affected Tendons

To understand tennis elbow better, it’s essential to grasp the deconstruction of the elbow joint and the tendons involved. The condition primarily affects the extensor carpi radialis brevis( ECRB) tendon, which helps stabilize the wrist when the elbow is straight.

Explanation of How repetitious Movements Lead to Tennis Elbow

Repetitive conditioning, similar to gripping, lifting, or swinging, puts strain on the ECRB tendon. Over time, this repetitive stress can lead to microtears in the tendon, causing inflammation and pain around the side epicondyle.

Causes of Tennis Elbow

Repetitive Conditioning and Sports( Not Limited to Tennis)

Tennis elbow is common among tennis players due to the repetitive motion of hitting the ball, but it can also affect individuals engaged in other conditioning activities such as oil, typing, gardening, or playing other chatter sports.

Occupational Factors Contributing to the Condition

Certain occupations that involve frequent and forceful wrist and arm movements, such as carpentry, plumbing, and oil drilling, can increase the threat of developing tennis elbow.

Age and Gender Considerations

Tennis elbow is more common in individuals between the ages of 30 and 50 and tends to affect both men and women inversely.

Symptoms of Tennis Elbow

Pain and Its position on the Arm

The primary symptom of tennis elbow is pain and tenderness on the external part of the elbow. The discomfort may radiate down the forearm and worsen with exercises that involve gripping or lifting.

Gradual Onset and Possible Alarms

Tennis elbow symptoms frequently develop gradually over time, and individuals may notice an increase in pain after specific movements or conditioning.

Associated Weakness and Discomfort

In some cases, tennis elbow can lead to weakness in the affected arm, making it challenging to perform simple tasks that require gripping or lifting.

Diagnosing Tennis Elbow

Medical History and Physical Examination

To diagnose tennis elbow, a healthcare provider will begin by examining the patient’s medical history and any recent conditioning or sports participation.

Specific Tests to Identify Tennis Elbow

During a physical examination, the healthcare provider may perform colorful tests, similar to the Cozen’s test or the Mill’s test, to assess the affected area and determine if the symptoms align with tennis elbow.

Differential Opinion to Rule Out Other Conditions

The healthcare provider may also consider other conditions with analogous symptoms, such as cervical radiculopathy or radial lair pattern, to insure an accurate opinion.

Medical Treatments

Rest and Activity Modification

The original step in treating tennis elbow involves resting the affected arm and avoiding conditioning that complicates the pain.

Pain Relief Measures (e.g., NSAIDs)

Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medicines( NSAIDs) can help reduce the pain and inflammation associated with tennis elbow.

Physical Therapy and Strengthening Exercises

Physical therapy can play a significant role in rehabilitating the affected arm and restoring strength and inflexibility to the tendons.

Corticosteroid Injections and Their Effectiveness

In some cases, corticosteroid injections may be recommended to reduce inflammation and give short-term relief from pain.

Use of Braces or slivers to Support the Affected Area

Braces or slivers may help palliate pressure on the affected tendons and promote mending.

Non-Medical Treatments

Importance of Lifestyle Changes

Making life changes, such as modifying repetitive movements and avoiding conditioning that strains the affected arm, can help in the recovery process.

Ergonomic adaptations in the Workplace

For individuals whose occupations contribute to the development of tennis elbow, ergonomic adaptations to workstations and tools can reduce strain on the affected tendons.

Preventive Measures During Sports and Physical Conditioning

Engaging in proper warm-up exercises, using an applicable outfit, and incorporating acceptable rest times can help prevent tennis elbow during sports and physical conditioning.

Indispensable and reciprocal curatives

Acupuncture and Its Implicit Benefits

Some individuals find relief from tennis elbow symptoms through acupuncture, which involves the insertion of thin needles into specific points on the body to promote mending and pain relief.

Massage Therapy and Its part in Pain Management

Massage remedies can help relax tight muscles and ameliorate blood rotation around the affected area, potentially reducing pain and promoting healing.

Supplements and Their Impact on Recovery

Certain supplements, such as omega-3 adipose acids and collagen, have been associated with supporting tendon health and recovery. Still, it’s essential to consult with a healthcare provider before taking any supplements.

Surgical Options

When Surgery Is Considered

Surgery is generally considered when conservative treatments fail to palliate symptoms after an extended period.

Types of Surgical Procedures for Tennis Elbow

Common surgical procedures for tennis elbow include open surgery or minimally invasive ways to remove damaged tendon tissue.

Rehabilitation and Recovery Post-Surgery

Following surgery, a recuperation program involving physical therapy and progressive strengthening exercises is pivotal for a successful recovery.

Precluding Tennis Elbow

Warm-up Up Exercises and Stretching Routines

Incorporating warm-up exercises and stretching routines before engaging in physical conditioning can help prepare the muscles and tendons for the demands ahead.

Proper fashion and outfits During Sports

Using proper techniques and outfits, such as a duly sized tennis cleat or ergonomic tools, can reduce the strain on the arm during sports and other conditioning.

Taking Breaks and Interspersing Conditioning

Taking regular breaks and interspersing different conditioning exercises can help prevent overuse of specific muscle groups and reduce the threat of developing tennis elbow.

Platelet-Rich Plasma (PRP) Injection in Treating Tennis Elbow

Platelet-Rich Plasma (PRP) injection is an innovative and promising treatment for various musculoskeletal conditions, including tennis elbow (lateral epicondylitis). PRP therapy harnesses the body’s natural healing abilities to promote tissue regeneration and alleviate pain, making it a popular choice for athletes, individuals with chronic pain, and those seeking non-invasive treatment options.

Understanding PRP

PRP is a substance derived from a patient’s own blood. It contains a higher concentration of platelets, growth factors, and other bioactive compounds compared to normal blood. Platelets play a crucial role in the body’s natural healing process. When activated, they release growth factors that stimulate cell growth and repair, making PRP an excellent candidate for treating injuries and conditions that involve damaged or inflamed tissue.

How PRP Injection Works for Tennis Elbow

The use of PRP injection in treating tennis elbow is a multi-step process:

Effectiveness and Benefits of PRP for Tennis Elbow

PRP therapy for tennis elbow is gaining popularity for several reasons:

Considerations and Consultation

While PRP therapy shows promise in treating tennis elbow, it may not be suitable for everyone. It’s essential to consult with a healthcare provider who specializes in this treatment to determine if PRP is the right option for your specific case. Your healthcare provider will consider factors such as the severity of your condition, your medical history, and your treatment goals.


In conclusion, tennis elbow, or side epicondylitis, is a common and frequently enervating condition that can affect individuals of all ages and occupations. Beforehand intervention is pivotal to managing and treating tennis elbow effectively. By understanding its causes, recognizing the symptoms, seeking a timely opinion, and exploring applicable treatment options, individuals can achieve a pain-free and active life. Flash back to consulting with a healthcare provider for substantiated advice and recommendations adapted to your specific requirements. Taking preventative measures and making life adaptations can further reduce the risk of developing tennis elbow, allowing you to enjoy life to the fullest.

Frequently Asked Questions

Tennis elbow( side epicondylitis) is a condition characterized by pain and inflammation on the outside of the elbow, while golfer’s elbow( medium epicondylitis) causes pain on the inner side of the elbow. The two conditions differ in the position of the affected tendons and the specific conditioning that sparks the pain.

Individuals who constantly engage in conditioning involving repetitive wrist and arm movements, such as tennis players, painters, carpenters, and office workers who perform expansive typing, are at an advanced risk of developing tennis elbow. Age and gender also play a part, with those between 30 and 50 being more susceptible.

The primary symptom of tennis elbow is pain and tenderness on the external part of the elbow. The discomfort may radiate down the forearm and can be aggravated by gripping or lifting objects. Weakness in the affected arm may also be endured.

A healthcare provider generally makes a tennis elbow diagnosis based on a physical examination, medical history review, and specific tests, such as the Cozen’s test and the Mill’s test. These tests help identify the affected tendons and separate tennis elbow from other conditions with analogous symptoms.

Conservative treatments for tennis elbow include rest, exercise revision, and the use of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medicines( NSAIDs) to reduce pain and inflammation. Physical remedies with stretching and strengthening exercises can also be salutary.

Corticosteroid injections may give short-term relief from pain and inflammation for some individuals with tennis elbow. Still, their long-term effectiveness remains a subject of debate, and they’re generally not recommended as a standalone treatment.

Surgery for tennis elbow is generally considered when conservative treatments fail to palliate symptoms after an extended period( generally six to twelve months). It isn’t the first-line treatment and is reserved for severe or habitual cases.

After tennis elbow surgery, patients undergo a recuperation program that includes physical remedies and progressive strengthening exercises. The recovery period may vary, but it’s essential to follow the healthcare provider’s recommendations to insure a successful outcome.