Elbow pain can be a painful and debilitating problem. Pain

located on the medial side is referred to as “golfers elbow” or

 medial epicondylitis and pain that is on the lateral side is often

 referred to as “tennis elbow” or lateral epicondylitis. Now you

don’t have to play golf or tennis to develop these problems. Pain

 in the elbow usually occurs as a result of repetitive use from

typing, hammering, grip/ lifting or swinging a club or racquet. It

 can occur over time or with a sudden episode. Symptoms

include pain with; grip, turning door handles or car ignition,

 fully extending or bending arm, typing, using the mouse.

Swelling and tenderness are also present. Pain can range from

minor irritation to significant limitations in use of hand/ arm.

Often times treatment includes limitation of exacerbating

activity, stretches, use of a forearm strap and various pain

modalities like ice, electrical stimulation and iontophoresis.

Iontophoresis is a treatment that utilizes an electrical current to

 drive a medication into the target tissue. We have found this to

be quite effective in decreasing pain. This particular treatment

requires a doctor’s prescription and is administered by the

physical therapist. We have also found that stretching and

strengthening the hip further enhances the recovery from elbow

pain. The hip you ask? Yes, the hips (and trunk) are the power

generators for the body. Think of hitting a baseball, swinging a

golf club or tennis racquet. In order to swing, lift, push, or pull

forcefully you must rotate the hips and trunk to increase force

generation. If unable to load the hips/trunk due to weakness or

limited motion (tightness) you will likely compensate by using

the arm muscles more. Over time this can lead to tissue stress

and “bam” the elbow starts to hurt. By improving hip mobility

and the working relationship between the elbow, shoulder, trunk

 and hips we have seen marked improvement in our ability to

address this painful condition. Due to the fact that we sit a lot

and sleep in the fetal position our hips naturally get tight and

develop muscle imbalances. Like we always say, “it’s all

connected”.   Seeking a rehab professional who understands

function and the relationships of human movement can greatly

improve your chances of overcoming your elbow pain.

 

Get Strong! Stay Strong!

Chris

 

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