Elbow

elbow

Elbow joint comprises of three bones: the humerus (upper arm), the radius and the ulna in the forearm. The prominent bony part at the tip behind the elbow is called the Olecranon process. Elbow pain is a common complaint and there are many common causes for this problem. 

ELBOW PAIN

SYMPTOMS

  • Acute and severe pain and tenderness
  • Swelling around the elbow
  • Radiation of pain down the forearm up to the wrist
  • Difficulty in bending and lifting the arm
  • Difficulty in gripping activities
  • Wrist may feel weak at times
  • In chronic conditions, it may lead to morning stiffness

 

 

CAUSES OF ELBOW PAIN

Causes and contributing factors vary, but commonly they are related to repetitive injury as a result of one or more of the following:

  • Poor sports/exercise technique
  • Wrong grip size of racquet for racquet games
  • Occupational tasks involving repetitive movements of the wrist and hands
  • Injury to the elbow or minor tears of the tendon

 

 

TYPES OF ELBOW PAIN

TENDINITIS: Repeated elbow and wrist activities leading to overuse and stress to the muscles and tendons may lead to elbow pain. E.g.: Gardening, using computer mouse etc.

Tennis Elbow or Lateral Epicondylitis – The pain usually occurs on the outer part of the elbow joint. This usually occurs due to the overuse of forearm muscles while doing activities like gripping, extension of wrist, elbow – typically the backhand stroke in Tennis

Golfer’s Elbow or Medial Epicondylytis – The pain usually occurs on the inner part of the elbow joint. This usually occurs with activities like repeated gripping, flexion of wrist and elbow – typically similar to Gold Swing.

Olecrenon Bursitis – This is a local inflammation behind the elbow that usually occurs after an injury, trauma or prolonged resting of the elbow on a hard surface. This may also occur in systemic conditions such as in Gout or Rheumatoid Arthritis.

Sprains – Sprains occur due to overstretching or tearing of the ligaments that stabilise the elbow joint. It usually occurs when there is a direct blow or twist on the joint. This may result in pain, stiffness and instability of the joint.

 

 

PHYSIOTHERAPY

Your physiotherapist may try various techniques to reduce the inflammation and pain. These may include:

Radial Shock Wave Therapy: There is an increased delivery of nutrients to the affected area which increases the blood vessel formation and initiates the healing response

Laser Therapy: Low level lasers cause vaso-dilatation, bringing in more oxygen to the tissue. This reduces the inflammation and promotes healing. There are no side effects.

Ultrasound Therapy: Decreases inflammation and increases the blood supply thereby promoting tissue repair

Interferential Therapy: Stimulates the muscle and nerve fibres and reduces pain and inflammation

Cryotherapy: Use of ice reduces pain and inflammation

Exercise Therapy: Soft tissues release techniques, frictional massage and stretching promotes healing and recovery

Elbow Guard or Tape: To support the tendons, thereby reducing the stress on them to encourage healing

 

TIPS TO PREVENT ELBOW PAIN

  • Regular stretching as advised by the physiotherapist
  • Progressive strengthening exercises using Omni bands or weights to increase the strength of gripping and arm muscles
  • Using a proper Racquet designed to reduce the effects of repeated stress
  • Resting the arm or reducing repetitive movements
  • Proper positioning of hand when working with the computer keyboard or mouse
  • Bracing or taping the elbow during activities

 

Call us for an appointment or send your queries to: info@physioasia.com

TENNIS ELBOW

INTRODUCTION

Tennis Elbow is localized pain/tenderness over the tissues around and below the bony prominence on the outside of the elbow, which is the origin of the Extensor tendon that is responsible for the extension/backward movement of the wrist.

It can occur in tennis players as well as people who use their arms repeatedly for grasping and squeezing movements that may overwork these muscles.

 

CAUSE OF TENNIS ELBOW

Causes and contributing factors vary, but in general, they are related to repetitive injury as a result of one of more of the following:

  • Poor sports technique (such as a tennis backhand stroke)
  • Wrong grip size of racquet for racquet games
  • Occupational tasks involving repetitive movements of the wrist and hands
  • Injury to the elbow or minor tears of the tendon

 

SYMPTOMS OF TENNIS ELBOW

Patients with tennis elbow syndrome experience pain on the outside of the elbow that is worsened by grasping objects and extending the wrist backwards.

The pain associated with tennis elbow usually has a gradual onset, but it may also come on suddenly.

The most common symptoms of tennis elbow are:

  • Pain over outside of the elbow
  • Pain when lifting/grasping objects e.g. lifting a cup of coffee, opening jar lids, weight training
  • Pain radiating down the forearm
  • Pain increases on bending wrist backwards against resistance
  • Wrist may feel weak at times

 

 

TREATMENT OF TENNIS ELBOW

Main aim is to reduce inflammation and pain and to stretch and strengthen the wrist and extensor muscles

 

Medical Help

Your doctor may prescribe some anti-inflammatories and pain-killers

 

Physiotherapy

Your physiotherapist may try various techniques to reduce the inflammation and pain. This may include:

  • Interferential Therapy: Electrical current that stimulates the peripheral sensory and muscle nerve fibers to reduce pain and inflammation
  • Ultrasound: This decreases tissue inflammation, promotes healing and increases blood circulation to the area.
  • Ice Therapy: To aid in reducing pain and inflammation
  • Laser: This involves the application of low power light to areas of the body in order to stimulate healing as it penetrates deeper into the underlying tissue.
  • Frictional Massage: This type of massage helps to break up scar tissue and adhesions.
  • Exercise Therapy: Includes muscle stretches to maintain the length of the muscles and strength.
  • Ergonomics Tips and Advice on Activity Modification: Your Physiotherapist can advise you on how to improve your posture, or improve your technique at sports and other activities to help prevent further injuries.
  • Elbow Guard or Tape: This helps to support the tendon and reduce further strain on it.

 

USEFUL ADVICE

  • Applying ice packs
  • Regular stretching as advised by the Physiotherapist
  • Resting the arm or reducing repetitive movements
  • Proper positioning of hand when working with the computer keyboard or mouse.
  • Bracing or taping the elbow during activities

 

Call us for an appointment or send your queries to: info@physioasia.com

GOLFER’S ELBOW

INTRODUCTION

Golfer’s elbow, also called as the Medial Epicondylitis, is the injury occurring on the inner aspect of the elbow. This is an overuse syndrome involving the musculo-tendinous origin of the common flexors. Same as the tennis elbow, this is also a form on tendinitis.

 

CAUSES OF GOLFER’S ELBOW

The mechanism of this injury can be a single violent action of the muscle or, more commonly, repetitive stress injury where an action is performed repeatedly. It may result into one or more of the following:

  • Poor sports technique (such as golf ball hitting from the top)
  • Occupational tasks involving repetitive movements of the wrist and hands (such as carpenters who use hand tools on occasion or people involved in desk bound jobs)
  • Injury on the elbow or minor tears of the tendon (such as hitting directly)
  • Lifting heavy objects with wrists flexed or tight grips

 

 

SYMPTOMS

  • Aching pain on the inner side of the elbow
  • Pain frequently radiating into the forearm
  • Pain with resisted in-turning of the wrist and flexion
  • Pain with passive backward stretching of wrist
  • Weakness of grip strength

 

TREATMENT OF GOLFER’S ELBOW

Main aim is to reduce inflammation and pain and to stretch and strengthen the wrist flexor muscles

Medical Help

Your doctor may prescribe some anti-inflammatories and pain-killers.

Physiotherapy

Your Physiotherapist may try various techniques to reduce the inflammation and pain. This may include:

  • Radial Shock Wave Therapy: There is an increased delivery of nutrients to the affected area, which increases the blood vessel formation and initiates the healing response.
  • Interferential Therapy: Electrical current that stimulates the peripheral sensory and muscle nerve fibres to reduce pain and inflammation
  • Ultrasound: This decreases tissue inflammation, promotes healing and increases blood circulation to the area.
  • Ice Therapy: To aid in reducing pain and inflammation.
  • Laser: This involves the application of low power light to areas of the body in order to stimulate healing as it penetrates deeper into the underlying tissue.
  • Frictional Massage: This type of massage helps to break up scar tissue and adhesions.
  • Exercise Therapy: Includes muscle stretches to maintain the length of the muscles and strength.
  • Ergonomics Tips and Advice on Activity Modification: Your Physiotherapist can advise you on how to improve your posture or improve your technique at sports and other activities to help prevent further injuries.
  • Elbow Guard or Tape: This helps to support the tendon and reduce further strain on it.

 

 

USEFUL ADVICE

  • Applying ice packs
  • Regular stretching as advised by the Physiotherapist
  • Resting the arm or reducing repetitive movements
  • Proper technique when working or playing sports
  • Bracing or taping the elbow during activities

 

Call us for an appointment or send your queries to: info@physioasia.com