Signs of tennis elbow differ from elbow arthritis and treatment offered at Florida Hand Center

Tennis elbow and elbow arthritis are two common causes of elbow pain. Tennis elbow treatment can be effective, but make take time and occupational therapy.
Feb. 6, 2012 - PRLog -- Patients in search of tennis elbow treatment often ask whether tennis elbow is the same as elbow arthritis.

It isn't.

The simple difference is that tennis elbow ( also known as lateral epicondylitis) affects the tendons around the elbow, while elbow arthritis is a joint affliction. Both can be painful, but it's important to diagnose the proper cause of the elbow pain. If it turns out to be tendon related, tennis elbow treatment can be effective, but may require several treatments and occupational therapy.

But first, the signs of tennis elbow.

While elbow pain associated with tennis elbow can come on suddenly and be severe, more frequently it develops slowly, with the pain increasing over time.

The pain is usually present at all times, but increases when squeezing items or shaking hands.

The elbow pain also increases when the wrist is used for tasks like lifting, opening jars, using tools or even simple kitchen utensils.

Tennis elbow draws its name from the propensity to affect tennis players. One study has found that nearly half of the people who play tennis for a prolonged time experience tennis elbow in their lives. Overall, about three percent of the population suffers from tennis elbow – which makes it slightly more common than elbow arthritis.  However, you do not have to play tennis to experience or develop this condition.

More common in men than women, tennis elbow tends to affect those between 30 and 50 years old. Elbow arthritis is more common in those over 60.

About 95 percent of people who undergo tennis elbow treatment get relief from simple exercises. Surgery may be the best tennis elbow treatment for the remaining five percent.

Basic tennis elbow treatment usually involves rest, ice and activity modification. Over the counter pain relieving drugs such as ibuprofen can be helpful in temporarily blocking the pain. For more advanced cases, a cortisone shot may be required.

As the pain begins to subside, a series of exercises that strengthen the elbow may be recommended as part of the tennis elbow treatment or several visits to an occupational therapist.

As with all hand and elbow injuries, a consultation with a doctor like those at the Florida Hand Center is recommended before beginning any treatment plan for tennis elbow or elbow arthritis.

About Florida Hand Center
Florida Hand Center is a specialized medical facility focused on minimally invasive hand and arm treatments. Founded by Dr. Stephen Helgemo, Florida’s leading carpal tunnel doctor, the facility offers both surgical and non-surgical treatment options and has thousands of patient success stories.  Some of the most commonly treated conditions include carpal tunnel syndrome, trigger finger, basilar joint arthritis, cubital tunnel syndrome, Dupuytren’s Contracture, lateral epicondylitis and injuries to the hand, wrist and fingers. Florida Hand Center provides on-site diagnostic testing such as nerve tests and imaging and saves patients time and money each year by offering quick, safe and successful in-office procedures.
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