Golfer’s elbow, a.k.a medial epicondylitis is when there’s inflammation on the tendons of the inner forearm muscles of the elbow joint. Although it is similar to Tennis Elbow it’s not as common. Pain can sometimes radiate down into the forearm.
What causes Golfer’s elbow?
The repetitive stress applied to these tendons of the inner forearm muscles lead to microscopic tears that eventually cause inflammation and pain. Golfer’s elbow is triggered by activities that involve repeated gripping, lifting or twisting the hand and wrist. It can also be caused by overhead throwing activities.
Activities that may trigger tennis elbow include:
- Playing tennis and other racquet sports
- Throwing Sports
- Rock Climbing
- Weight Training
Symptoms do vary between patients.
The most commonly experienced signs and symptoms include:
- Pain on the inside of the elbow
- Pain on the bony point of the joint
- The triggering of pain when turning a door handle or opening jars
- A weak grip
Rest – allowing your elbow to recover is the most effective treatment for golfer’s elbow since inflammation needs time to fully subside.
Using ice packs – similar to other injuries, applying cold packs on the site of pain can significantly improve your symptoms. Apply ice to the affected area up to six times a day, 15 minutes at a time.
Pharmacological drugs – Non-Steroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drugs (e.g., ibuprofen) are also effective in reducing pain and swelling. Discuss with your Pharmacist.
Physical therapy – this treatment involves the strengthening of your forearm muscles to promote healing. Physical therapy uses exercises, massages, dry needling and other techniques to stimulate the muscles.
Strengthening your forearm muscles do not only treat, but can help prevent Golfer’s elbow. Once you suspect you might be suffering from Golfer’s elbow, modify your activities immediately to reduce pain. If you push through the pain, it will only get worse.
Hopefully, this article managed to shed some light on golfer’s elbow. If the symptoms persist, contact us. We’ll be happy to help you through your physical therapy journey.