Tennis elbow / golfer's elbow

Tennis elbow causes pain on the outside of the elbow, while golfer's elbow refers to pain affecting the inside of the elbow.

Overview

Tennis elbow causes pain on the outside of the elbow, while golfer's elbow refers to pain affecting the inside of the elbow. These are caused by repeated overuse. Symptoms often improve through cooling, immobilisation and resting the arm.

Symptoms

  • Pain when twisting the forearm, making a fist, gripping and lifting objects
  • Touching the tender spot on the elbow (outer or inner side) makes the pain worse
  • Red skin, overheating and swelling at the elbow

Causes and treatment

Causes

  • Repeated overuse
  • This causes inflammation of the tissue connecting the forearm muscles and tendons to the elbow
  • Both can be felt as noticeable bulges on the inside and outside of the elbow

Further treatment by your doctor / in hospital

Possible tests
  • Blood test
  • X-ray
  • MRI (magnetic resonance imaging)
Possible therapies
  • Painkillers
  • Anti-inflammatory medication (injection)
  • Physiotherapy

What can I do myself?

  • Avoid putting too much strain on the elbow joint
  • Immobilise the arm or keep it still
  • Take it easy for a while
  • Cooling sprays and compresses provide support
  • Apply anti-inflammatory ointments
  • Correct sitting posture when working, take regular breaks

When to see a doctor?

  • Pain doesn't disappear, or gets worse

Synonyms

Tennis elbow / golfer's elbow, golfer's elbow

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CSS offers no guarantee for the accuracy and completeness of the information. The information published is no substitute for professional advice from a doctor or pharmacist.

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