• Printer Friendly Version
  • Decrease Text Size
  • Increase Text Size
  • PDF

Friday, June 28, 2024

What the Heck is Tennis Elbow, Anyway?

Posted By: Advancing Care

Medically reviewed by Matthew Konigsberg, MD

What is it?

Tennis elbow occurs when you overuse your forearm muscles during strenuous or repetitive activities. When the forearm muscle is strained, the tendon that connects it to the bone can tear and become inflamed.

Symptoms of tennis elbow include:

  • Pain or burning in the outside of your elbow, forearm or wrist
  • Weak grip strength
  • Worsened pain during forearm activities such as holding a racquet or shaking hands

woman suffering from tennis elbow

Who is at risk?

This condition is associated with racquet sports because of the way you hold a racquet and bend your wrist backward, away from your palm, during play. But tennis elbow doesn’t exclusively affect tennis players. 

Anyone who works or participates in activities that require repetitive use of the forearm or extension of the wrist and hand is at risk of developing tennis elbow. 

How is it treated?

Treatment for tennis elbow involves:

  • Rest
  • Ice
  • Pain medication
  • Stretching
  • Bracing
  • Physical therapy
  • Activity modifications

If you play racquet sports, it’s important to ensure proper equipment fit and form while playing.

If symptoms persist after initial treatments, you may be a candidate for other treatments such as steroid injections, platelet-rich plasma injections, shock wave therapy, or surgery.

If you’re experiencing symptoms of tennis elbow, make an appointment with a WMCHealth orthopaedic specialist.