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- Improper golf swing technique or grip of golf clubs
- Wrong model of golf clubs
- Improper technique for hitting a tennis ball
- Improper size of tennis racquet or tension of racquet strings
Doing certain arm motions too much, such as:
- Golf swings
- Tennis strokes (forehand or serve)
- Using a hammer or screwdriver
- Playing golf or tennis
- Work that requires repetitive gripping or clenching of the fingers (especially when the hand is bent up or down at the wrist)
- Muscle imbalance
- Decreased flexibility
- Advancing age
- Pain or tenderness on the inner side of the elbow
Pain increases when:
- Shaking hands
- Turning doorknobs
- Picking up objects with your palm down
- Hitting a forehand in tennis
- Swinging a golf club
- Applying pressure to this area
- Possibly pain extending down the forearm
- Tightness of forearm muscles
- Stiffness or trouble moving the elbow or hand
Pain on the inner side of the elbow when:
- Doing certain arm motions
- Pressing on the medial epicondyle
- Stiffness of elbow and pain with wrist movement
- Nonsteroid anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs)
- Topical pain relievers that are applied to the skin
Gradual Return to Your Sport
- Keep your arm muscles strong so they can absorb the energy of sudden physical stress.
- After a short warm-up period, stretch your arm muscles before physical activity.
- Learn the proper technique for activities that require forearm motion.
If you play golf, ask a golf specialist to check your:
- Swing technique
- Model of golf clubs
If you play tennis, ask a tennis specialist to check your:
- Technique for hitting a forehand
- Racket size and tension of racket strings
Ortho Info— American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons http://www.orthoinfo.org
Sports Med—American Orthopaedic Society for Sports Medicine http://www.sportsmed.org
Canadian Orthopaedic Association http://www.coa-aco.org
Canadian Orthopaedic Foundation http://www.canorth.org
Chumbley EM, O'Connor FG. Evaluation of overuse elbow injuries. Am Fam Physician. 2000;61(3):691-700.
Golf injury prevention. American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons Ortho Info website. Available at: http://orthoinfo.aaos.org/topic.cfm?topic=A00137. Updated August 2011. Accessed December 17, 2014.
Józsa LG, Kannus P. Human tendons. Human Kinetics; 1997.
Medial epicondylitis. EBSCO DynaMed website. Available at: http://www.ebscohost.com/dynamed. Updated August 20, 2014. Accessed December 17, 2014.
Metz JP. Managing golf injuries: Technique and equipment changes that aid treatment. Phys Sportsmed. 1999;27(7):41-56.
Overuse injuries. American Orthopaedic Society for Sports Medicine website. Available at: http://www.sportsmed.org/downloads/tips/AOSSM%5FOveruse%20Injuries.pdf. Accessed December 17, 2014.
Petersen B, Rovati S. Diclofenac epolamine (Flector) patch: Evidence for topical activity. Clin Drug Investig. 2009;29(1):1-9.
Shiri R, Viikari-Juntura E. Lateral and medial epicondylitis: Role of occupational factors. Best Pract Res Clin Rheumatol. 2011;25(1):43-57.
10/26/2010 DynaMed's Systematic Literature Surveillance http://www.ebscohost.com/dynamed: Massey T, Derry S, et al. Topical NSAIDs for acute pain in adults. Cochrane Database Syst Rev. 2010;(6):CD007402.
- Reviewer: Teresa Briedwell, PT, DPT, OCS, CSCS
- Review Date: 12/2014 -
- Update Date: 12/20/2014 -
This content is reviewed regularly and is updated when new and relevant evidence is made available. This information is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with questions regarding a medical condition.
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