Despite the name, most of the people who develop Tennis Elbow are not working on their serve, but rather work in jobs like construction and manufacturing that require them to make the same hand and wrist movements over and over again for a long period of time. But what is the difference between a few aches and pains from a hard day versus a serious problem like Tennis Elbow? It all comes down to the symptoms, which Dr. Paul Tortland of the New England Stem Cell Institute is going to outline below.
The type of pain caused by Tennis Elbow is very specific. Firstly, it is primarily felt on the outside of the elbow and may extend toward the hand. It’s primarily triggered by bending the elbow or twisting the arm. That’s because the tendon that connects the muscles of the forearm to the elbow is strained or injured, so moving the joint causes irritation and inflammation. Over time, this pain will noticeably increase, both during and between activity.
Tennis Elbow can lead to chronic inflammation of the tendons and muscles near the elbow and in the forearm to the point that the area will actually look swollen and distorted. This can make the joint feel stiff and usually increases throughout the day as someone is using their arm.
Eventually, Tennis Elbow can make even simple tasks practically impossible because of weakness in the arm, making it difficult to do things like grip a tool, turn a doorknob, or hold a coffee cup steady. Patients with Tennis Elbow often report dropping things more often or having to use two hands for certain things that used to require one.
Tennis Elbow is a type of tendonitis, but without treatment, it can eventually turn into tendinosis, in which the affected tendon starts to break down on its own without being able to repair itself. Thankfully, there is a lot you can do before this point. To get ahead of the condition and save yourself a lot of pain in the future, you should schedule an appointment with a doctor right away. This will allow them to diagnose the condition and recommend treatment.
While conservative treatments like bracing, taking anti-inflammatory medication, and using ice/heat on the area work well for managing the symptoms of Tennis Elbow, they do very little to address the root of the problem. That’s where Dr. Tortland can help using regenerative treatments like PRP and prolotherapy. These enable the body to heal at an accelerated pace, which will allow the damaged tendon to mend itself in record time, leading to the abatement of pain, swelling, and weakness.
To schedule an appointment at the New England Stem Cell Institute and take your first step toward a more comfortable tomorrow, contact us today.