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Tennis Elbow

Tennis elbow, or lateral epicondylitis, is an overuse injury causing pain, tenderness, and weakness. Treatments include Physical Therapy, rest, ice, medication, and bracing.
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What is Tennis Elbow?

Tennis elbow, also known as lateral epicondylitis, is inflammation of the forearm muscle tendons at their insertion on the outside part of the elbow. This overuse injury causes pain, tenderness, weakness, and difficulty in grabbing objects or turning doorknobs. Common risk factors include tennis, golf, baseball, gymnastics, weightlifting, and manual labor.

Treatment involves customized plans by fellowship-trained and board-certified specialists. Rest and ice are crucial, with specific instructions provided for duration and application. Additional treatment options include nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), available in oral and topical forms; removable bracing to relieve pressure on tendons; physical therapy exercises to decrease symptoms and prevent recurrence; and injections of steroids, numbing medications, or platelet-rich plasma to alleviate pain.


Tennis elbow or lateral epicondylitis is inflammation of the forearm muscle tendons at their insertion on the lateral (outside) part of the elbow. Tennis elbow presents as pain and tenderness directly over the lateral epicondyle, a palpable bony bump. Accompanying symptoms may include weakness, numbness, and stiffness. Tennis elbow makes it difficult for patients to grab objects, make a fist, shake hands, and/or turn doorknobs and food container tops. The cause of tennis elbow is overuse. Sports and activities that increase the risk of tennis elbow include:

  • Tennis
  • Golf
  • Baseball
  • Gymnastics
  • Weightlifting
  • Manual labor

Fellowship trained and board-certified specialists diagnose and treat tennis elbow. Prescribed treatment options meet the needs of patients.

How is Tennis Elbow Treated?

Customized treatment plans include multiple treatment options. Rest and ice are very effective. Rest gives inflamed tendons a chance to calm down. Ice speeds up the process. OIBO specialists give patients specific instructions regarding exactly how long to rest and how and when to apply ice. Other treatment options include:

  • Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs). Oral and topical medications. NSAIDs are available in over-the-counter and prescription strengths.
  • Bracing. A removal brace may be worn as needed to take pressure off the forearm tendons.
  • Physical therapy. OIBO approved physical therapists give patients exercises to decrease symptoms and prevent tennis elbow from returning.
  • Injections. An injection of steroid and numbing medications quickly decreases pain. In some cases, platelet-rich plasma injections may be used.

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Patients deserve personalized, outcome-driven care provided by physicians who genuinely care about them. As medicine has become more corporate and transactional, OrthoNJ prioritizes exceptional doctor/patient relationships. This is why we say we have The Power to Put Patients First.

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Patients deserve personalized, outcome-driven care provided by physicians who genuinely care about them. As medicine has become more corporate and transactional, OrthoNJ prioritizes exceptional doctor/patient relationships. This is why we say we have The Power to Put Patients First.

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