Tennis Elbow or Lateral Epicondylitis
Does Physio Help Tennis Elbow?
A case review of a client who was suffering from Tennis elbow –
After having some time off, the patient had just returned to working as an electrician the workload had increased significantly. At first they began to get elbow pain when gripping tools (e.g. screwdriver). Over two more weeks, symptoms worsened to the point that elbow pain was now being felt during lighter activities such as brushing their teeth and lifting the kettle. On arrival at the clinic, elbow pain was reaching a 7 out of 10 whilst at work and the pain had now been preventing the patient from going to the gym. After 3 Physiotherapy sessions involving muscle and fascia release, acupuncture, ultrasound and guided rehab, the patient’s reported pain had reduced to 4 out of 10 at work only with lighter activities pain free. By session 5, the patient had made a return to the gym and was working pain free.
What is Tennis Elbow?
Elbow Pain or pain in the elbow while gripping something is often caused by a condition known
as lateral epicondylitis or tennis elbow. The pain is found on the outside of the elbow and occurs when the tendons of the muscles which attaches on the outside of the elbow are injured. These muscles are used to pull the wrist
and fingers up and therefore, pain/difficultly performing this action may be a sign that you have
this injury. Although called tennis elbow, anybody can be affected by this. It is most commonly
seen in 30-55 year olds who perform repetitive movements.
Tennis elbow symptoms
● Pain on the outside of the elbow just below the elbow joint
● Pain when lifting/bending the arm
● Pain when gripping (especially smaller objects – toothbrush, kettle)
● Increased pain when using the forearm muscles (e.g. using a screw driver or twisting a
What causes tennis elbow?
● Overuse of the forearm muscles
– When the muscle is overused, small tears can occur in the tendon which may
result in inflammation and pain
● Factors that may increase risk:
– Manual work (plastering, plumbing, painting)
– Repetitive wrist movements (screwdriver, typing)
– Tennis ground strokes
– Throwing sports
Physiotherapy for tennis elbow:
Here at Physio Plus, we offer a range of treatment modalities which can help manage and
improve tennis elbow or similar elbow symptoms, such as:
● Muscle and fascia release – Reduce muscle soreness and tension
● Provide a tailored exercise programme to:
– reduce pain
– improve mobility
– Manage pain
– build strength in the forearm muscles
● Educate – Provide you with the right information to better manage symptoms and prevent
this from reoccurring
● Electrotherapy (e.g. ultrasound) – to reduce pain and speed up the healing rate around the tendon
● Acupuncture – For pain reduction and an anti-inflammatory response