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Medial Epicondylitis

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by LaRusso L

(Golfer's Elbow)

 

Definition

Medial epicondylitis is commonly called golfer's elbow, but it is not restricted to people who play golf. It can occur in tennis players and other people who repeatedly grip objects tightly.
Medial Epicondylitis
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Treatment

Treatment includes:

Rest

Do not do activities that cause pain. Do not play sports, especially golf and tennis, until the pain is gone.

Cold

Apply ice or a cold pack to the inner side of the elbow for 15-20 minutes, four times a day for several days after the injury. Wrap the ice or cold pack in a towel. Do not apply the ice directly to your skin.

Medication

The following drugs can help to reduce inflammation and pain:
  • Aspirin
  • Ibuprofen (Motrin, Advil)
  • Naproxen (Aleve, Naprosyn)
  • Acetaminophen (Tylenol)
  • Topical pain medicines (such as creams, patches) applied to the skin
If you still have tenderness in the elbow while taking these drugs, do not return to physical activity. Check with your doctor.

Compression

Wear a counter-force brace on your forearm if recommended by your healthcare professional. This brace limits the force generated by your forearm muscles when you use them.

Heat

Apply heat to the elbow only when you are returning to physical activity. Then use it before stretching or getting ready to play sports.

Stretching

When the acute pain is gone, start gentle stretching as recommended by a healthcare professional. Stay within pain limits. Hold each stretch for about 10 seconds and repeat six times.

Strengthening

Begin strengthening exercises for the flexor muscles of the forearm as recommended.

Gradual Return to Your Sport

Begin arm motions of your sport or activity (such as golf swings, tennis strokes, painting) as recommended.

Cortisone Injection

The doctor may inject cortisone into the elbow near the medial epicondyle to reduce pain and inflammation.
 

RESOURCES

American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons
http://www.aaos.org

American Orthopaedic Society for Sports Medicine
http://www.sportsmed.org

 

CANADIAN RESOURCES

Canadian Orthopaedic Association
http://www.coa-aco.org

Canadian Orthopaedic Foundation
http://www.canorth.org

 

References


American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons website. Available at: http://www.aaos.org .


American Orthopaedic Society for Sports Medicine website. Available at: http://www.aossm.org/tabs/Index.aspx.


Assessment and treatment guidelines for elbow injuries. The Physician and Sportsmedicine . 1996;24:42.


Human Tendons . Human Kinetics; 1997.


Managing golf injuries. The Physician and Sportsmedicine . 1999;29:41.


Nicholas Institute of Sports Medicine and Athletic Trauma website. Available at: http://www.nismat.org/ .


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 https://dynamed.ebscohost.com/about/about-us : Massey T, Derry S, Moore R, McQuay H. Topical NSAIDs for acute pain in adults. Cochrane Database Syst Rev. 2010;(6):CD007402.

 

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