What Causes Lateral Epicondylitis?
Tennis Elbow - Causes
Although over 50% of tennis players will experience tennis elbow at some point in time, it is caused by many common activities. It generally affects men and women between 35-65 years of age who stress their wrist and elbow through twisting or extending motions in repetitive work or activities.
This condition is very common with sports participants (racquet sports, golfers, fencers, swimmers, throwing sports) as well as plumbers, carpenters, landscapers, painters, waitresses, librarians, office workers and musicians.
Tennis elbow and golfer's elbow are a result of vigorous use and movements or overstraining of the forearm muscles that move your fingers, hand, wrist and forearm. Overuse of your muscles really depends on how long you do something and how much effort you exert doing it. The constant tugging at the point of attachment on the outside of your elbow (lateral epicondyle) or the inside of your elbow (medial epicondyle) can cause these tendons to become inflamed and strained. Your muscles and tendons can then become irritated which can result in weaker tendons, tiny tendon tears and development of scar tissue and/or calcium deposits. The development of scar tissue will put pressure on your soft tissue and nerves, and interrupt the blood flow to this area; this can be very painful (see ultrasound therapy for scar tissue treatment).
If tennis elbow pain is due to a deterioration of the tendon (tendinopathy), it can take from two to six months to fully recover. Many cases of lateral epicondylitis become chronic problems that progressively get worse if sufferer continues performing the causal activity that started the condition in the first place. When you do this, your body definitely indicates there is a problem as the area will continue to generate a lot of pain.