Tennis Elbow 
Author Message
 Tennis Elbow

One of my friends dad's is suffering from tennis elbow.  He's in his middle
fourties.  What would be good suggestions for treatment that I could give him
since he refuses to see an ortho.

Thanks in advance.   Kirk


| Iowa City, IA 52240   |  driveways and drive  | Biomedical Engineering    |
| (319)-339-0299        |       parkways?       | University of Iowa        |
|  "A heart is not judged by how much it loves,                             |
|             but by how much it is loved by others." - The Wizard of Oz    |

Fri, 14 Jan 1994 13:30:19 GMT
 Tennis Elbow

>One of my friends dad's is suffering from tennis elbow.  He's in his middle
>fourties.  What would be good suggestions for treatment that I could give him
>since he refuses to see an ortho.

The advantage of seeing a doctor is that diagnostic accuracy will be
improved and certain treatments (prescription {*filter*}, physical therapy)
are available only by prescription.  However, if the injury really is
tennis elbow, self-treatment is often practical.

Tennis elbow (tendinitis) is generally caused by repeated overuse -
the tendon is slightly injured and not given enough time to recover
before another use causes further damage.  The injury causes
inflammation, which limits {*filter*} flow and further slows healing.
Various painful sensations can be felt during use, as well as
generalized aching, pangs of sharp pain, and soreness (sensitivity to
touch) afterward.

The first thing to do is get your friend's dad to admit that he has an
overuse injury, and acknowledge that he is responsible for for the
problem - there is no quick cure for tendinitis, and no barrage of
treatments will cure the problem if he continues the same course of
activity that caused it.  Next, he will have to concentrate on
eliminating the factors that created his tendinitis - trauma to the
tendon, and inflammation.

At the beginning, complete rest is recommended.  This will both remove
the stresses that caused the tennis elbow and allow the inflamation to
reduce.  If only one elbow is affected, use the other arm for daily
activities (e.g. opening doors).  Wait until pangs of pain and
generalized aching subside before beginning any strength training.
Frequent stretching is a good idea, but never stretch forcefully -
slow easy stretches are best.  Stretching helps to align new fibers
along the axis of the tendon, shich is an important concern since the
scar tissue that repairs the tendon is not as strong as the original.

When the time is right, begin a program of light strength training
everyday.  Keep the weights (or whatever method of resistance is
chosen) light and work for endurance.  Don't worry about a little bit
of pain after these session - it may be necessary to work through some
discomfort, but too much pain is a sigh of overdoing.  The most
important thing is to pay attention to how the injury feels, and
adjust to compensate.  Be sure to warm up before training (stretching
for 10 minutes is one option), since this will reduce the chance of
aggrevating the injury.

Eventually resume activity.  However, paying attention to how you feel
is critical to allow complete recovery and continued injury-free
activity.  It is usually possible to feel slight discomfort during
activity before much damage has been done.  This is the time to stop!
Adequate recovery time is now essential.  Remember that tendons have
very limited {*filter*} supply and heal slowly, so it may be necessary to
wait two or three days between stressful episodes.  Light training in
between can still be beneficial.

The other half of treatment is to increase {*filter*} supply, primarily by
reducing inflammation.  One of the most effective ways to accomplish
this is by cooling the affected area with ice (or equivalent).  Do
this after all activity.  This is so important that I will repeat:
Ice the elbow after all stressful activity!  Icing is effective at
limiting inflamation following activity as well as reducing
inflamation already present.  One source has suggested a course of
ice followed by a compression wrap for 30 minutes, repeated for many

Some people swear by anti-inflammatory {*filter*} such as aspirin,
ibuprofen, and various prescription {*filter*}.  People seem to respond
with various degrees of success to these substances, with some
individuals preferring one drug and others another.  I do not think
they helped me substantially.

Heat can be useful for increasing circulation, but it does not
penetrate very deeply.  Massage may also ve valuable, but the heavy
cross-fiber massage sometimes recommended for tendinitis can be very
damaging - again it is best to use good judgement and avoid excessive

I must have forgotten something, buy hey, this is free advice so what
do you expect?  Remember that sensible activity is necessary for
recovery and prevention of tendinitis.

Good luck to your friend's dad.


Sat, 15 Jan 1994 01:43:45 GMT
 [ 2 post ] 

 Relevant Pages 

1. tennis elbow

2. Tennis Elbow questions

3. Tennis Elbow?

4. Tennis elbow

5. Tennis Elbow

6. Tennis Elbow Revisited

7. Tennis Elbow

8. Tennis Elbow

9. Need Info On Tennis Elbow

10. Tennis elbow questions

11. Tennis Elbow

12. Need help re:Tennis elbow

Powered by phpBB® Forum Software