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Causes and Risk Factors

Tennis elbow is primarily caused by overuse and repetitive strain on the forearm muscles and tendons. Key causes and risk factors may include:

  • Frequent participation in activities that involve repetitive wrist and arm movements, such as tennis, golf, or weightlifting
  • Poor technique or form during physical activities
  • Lack of proper warm-up before engaging in physical activity
  • Using equipment that is not suited for your body type or playing style
  • Age, as individuals between 30 and 50 years old are more prone to developing tennis elbow
  • Certain occupations that involve repetitive use of the forearm, such as carpenters, painters, and plumbers


The symptoms of tennis elbow may vary in severity but typically include:

  • Pain and tenderness on the outside of the elbow
  • Weak grip strength
  • Pain that worsens with wrist and hand movements
  • Stiffness in the elbow joint
  • Discomfort when lifting or bending the arm
  • Numbness or tingling in the fingers

Diagnostic Process

Diagnosing tennis elbow involves a thorough medical history and physical examination. The process may include discussing symptoms, duration, and any activities contributing to the condition with a doctor. The physical examination focuses on tenderness and pain around the lateral epicondyle, grip strength, and wrist and arm movements that trigger pain. Imaging tests like X-rays or MRI are not typically required but may be used to rule out other conditions if necessary.

Treatment Options

Conservative Care

Conservative care is often the first line of treatment for tennis elbow, focusing on alleviating pain and reducing inflammation without surgical intervention. These non-invasive approaches aim to promote healing, restore function, and prevent further strain on the affected tendons. Common conservative care options include:

  • Resting the affected arm and avoiding activities that exacerbate symptoms
  • Applying ice packs to the elbow for 15-20 minutes several times a day to reduce swelling
  • Taking over-the-counter pain relievers such as ibuprofen or acetaminophen to manage pain and inflammation
  • Performing physical therapy exercises designed to stretch and strengthen the forearm muscles
  • Using a brace or strap to support the elbow and reduce strain on the tendons
  • Gradually returning to activities while maintaining proper technique and using appropriate equipment
  • Receiving corticosteroid injections to reduce severe pain and inflammation, if recommended by a doctor

Surgical Treatment

If conservative treatments are insufficient, surgery may be necessary. Excel Health’s surgical approaches aim to relieve pain and restore function. Surgical options include procedures to remove damaged tissue and repair the tendon. Our goal is to ensure optimal recovery and improved quality of life through advanced surgical techniques.

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