What is Golfer’s Elbow?
A condition in which the tendons that attach to the inner part of the elbow are inflamed and painful or degenerating. The inner elbow is the where the wrist flexor muscles attach. Repetitive or explosive movements involving eccentric motion (lengthening of the muscle while contracting) may cause persistent injury to these muscles. Over time, small tears create disorganized tissue within the involved tendon, which is where the muscle attaches to the bone.
When pain occurs where the muscle and tendon meet in the flexor muscle groups, it is medically known as “medial epicondylalgia”. Since it commonly occurs in golfers, due to the explosive downswing, it has been coined “Golfers Elbow”, although tennis players and those with manual labor occupations frequently develop the condition as well.
What are the Typical Symptoms and Risk Factors of Golfer’s Elbow?
- Pain on the inner side of your elbow
- Pain that typically worsens after certain repeating activities
- Age 40+
- Pain with gripping
- Occupation involving repetitive tasks
How is the Diagnosis Made?
Medial epicondylalgia is diagnosed clinically by the following findings:
- Localized tenderness over the inner elbow and wrist flexor muscles
- Pain with resisted wrist flexion with the elbow in full extension
- Pain with passive terminal wrist extension with the elbow in full extension
What are the Best Lines of Treatment?
- Physical Therapy and eccentric Exercises
- Nonsteroidal Anti-inflammatory Drugs (NSAIDS)
- Glucocorticoid Injections
- Platelet Rich Plasma
Excellent! A recent study showed an overall three-year recovery rate at 81%.
By Laura Jabczenski and Alee Vladyka