That Chronic Elbow Pain Is fixable...You Don't Have To Live With It...And It Might Not Be Caused By What you Think It Is.
You probably have heard of Tennis Elbow or Lateral Epicondylitis...and you might be suffering from it...even if you don't play tennis.
It is the number one reason to seek medical help when your elbow hurts and could have several causes.
It often occurs in the fourth decade of someone's life but truly can show up at any age.
The most common and understood reason is repetitive gripping activities or overuse of the thumb, index and middle fingers. This can creates a strain from micro tears in tendons on the outside of your elbow. An avid tennis players is as likely to experience these symptoms as a carpenter, a painter, a knitter or someone that is jackhammering or typing on a keyboard at work.
Because this is the common reasons, a lot of patients that receive physical therapy treatments to fix this problem are exposed to the same cookie cutter treatment combination of ice/ultrasound/wrist and elbow stretches and strengthening.
This often has limited long lasting effect as it addresses symptoms but fail to address the cause as pain on the outside of your elbow.
A proficient therapist should evaluate from neck down to wrist and hand to accurately identify cause of your pain.
Lateral elbow pain can often be referred from neck joint(s), or nerve roots that are not allowed to move normally, from a stiff elbow or wrist joint where the bones are stuck in a faulty positional and not able to move through their range, from a stiff ribcage that creates strain further down the arm when you pitch or throw a ball or does not allow for enough movement of the nerve traveling down from your neck to your arm, and also simply from chronic tightness in muscles and fascia in your arm, not allowing your radial nerve to move correctly, placing pressure on/compressing the nerve, which translates into pain on the outside of the elbow.
A therapist trained in manual therapy, neuro-dynamics and pain science should be on your top list when you are seriously considering treatment options to address your pain...even if you have had the cookie cutter treatment mentioned previously. No other professional will be as proficient as analyzing what structure or specific movement is at the source of that nag hanging on the outside of your arm. And that could save you from an avoidable surgery.
Try these following exercises to start helping yourself...
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Pierre-Yves Butheau, MPT, CMP has been a physiotherapist for 19 years and has a passion for helping people move better, return from and prevent injuries, as well as improve their function and quality of life. He has a strong interest in addressing the root cause of and treating neuro-musculoskeletal conditions while educating his patients with the knowledge to manage their conditions and prevent recurrence. Pierre also has a niche in treating Bell's palsy and temporomandibular joint dysfunctions.