Tennis Elbow

aniceeJanuary 15, 2006

Was just dx with a tennis elbow...Besides taking the Naproxen my doctor prescribed for the inflammation...what is the best thing to do to help the healing..

Thank you!


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Acupuncture helped me over 20 years ago with this. I stopped trying to play after that. If you are not squeamish about it see your local acupuncturist. A friend who plays daily just got over his with the help of Glucosamine and Chondroitin supplements.

    Bookmark   January 16, 2006 at 12:07AM
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Ask your doctor for a referral for some physical therapy. I had about 8 sessions over a 2-month period at my local hospital a few years ago, and was amazed at how effective it was in resolving the problem. I received some massage, was taught some simple exercises with light weights, and also had some weird but highly effective gel electrophoresis sessions where a mild (undetectable) electric current was used to draw medication into the affected area.

Good luck, it is a miserable condition.


    Bookmark   January 18, 2006 at 2:19PM
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I had tennis elbow years ago. The dr. offered to give me a shot of cortisone, but being a needle-phobe I said no thanks. It finally went away, but it was many, many months, and even now if I lift or pull too much weight, I feel a slight twinge. I think I wore a brace on my arm near the elbow for a while, the lower arm that is. Don't know if it helped, but it seemed to feel better.

    Bookmark   January 25, 2006 at 6:09PM
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Your situation may be beyond this simplistic band aid, but it's worth a try.

I had tennis elbow many times, and tried the tensor appliances, which are available at the drug and health care stores. I had a drug for inflammation, but for day-to-day activities, including sports, I used the tensor. You see lots of athletes using them. I had heel spurs, and I thought I was scuppered forever, but another simple appliance did the trick. It's amazing, how these devices work. In both cases, I was pain free and the problems eventually healed.

Try this experiment. Wrap a cord or elastic bandage around your forearm about 3 inches below your elbow with some pressure, and manipulate your arm and wrists about. See if you have any pain. With the actual devices, it will be more comfortable and you can relieve the pressure intermittently

    Bookmark   January 29, 2006 at 7:25PM
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Other things you might want to think about are:

1. Are you playing with used balls. Nothing will give you tennis elbow faster then hitting dead balls.

2. Check to see the stiffness of your racquet. I have found over the years a very stiff racquet can cause tennis elbow(oh, and hitting the ball too late). Have you changed racquets recently?

Hope it gets better soon and you are able to get out on the courts. It is terrific exercise!

    Bookmark   January 31, 2006 at 2:03PM
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An ice cube rubbed on the sore spot once a day for ten minutes cured both my tennis elbow and an even more painful protruding metatarsal joint problem. This solution came from an orthopedist. Simple, cheap and it works - you can't beat that!

    Bookmark   February 12, 2006 at 6:01PM
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I have tennis elbow and I do not play tennis or any racket sports. I believe it is from using a computer mouse daily in a non-ergomatic position. going on 6 weeks now. getting very frustrated. Dr also said to come back for a cortisone shot if it did not improve. have not talked to anyone who has ever had cortisone help. Three weeks since diagnosis. I have been using advil, ice twice a day and purchased an elbow strap, but it seems to be getting worse. I am even now wearing the elbow strap to bed at night, and all day. I take it off to shower and then it starts hurting just washing my hair. Morning routine is the worst from then on. have to brush teeth, do hair, makeup etc with bad arm. Even shifting to reverse and back in mu A/T car hurts. It just aches all day and night. Been trying to mouse with left hand,but not helping so far. I have also been taking of Glucosamine and Chondroitin (with msm) supplements for over a year for my knees with no results at all. I was recently reading if one gets no relief from the Glucosamine after two months to stop using to not waste money.

    Bookmark   March 18, 2006 at 9:27PM
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Try the ice cube thing - it really works!

    Bookmark   March 19, 2006 at 10:08AM
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Surfergal, that sounds really bad. I think you need to make a trip back to the dr.

    Bookmark   March 19, 2006 at 10:35AM
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as I understand it, there is nothing Dr. can do other than cortisone shot. just need rest from activity which caused it. They do not recomend therapy/exercise until pain is gone. As stated, I am icing twice a day. Personally, I do not understand why icing would have any effect, let alone healing. If it was swollen ice would make it go down, but it is not. Ice just numbs it for a few minutes.

    Bookmark   March 20, 2006 at 6:19AM
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The first thing to do is be sure you have an accurate diagnosis. MRI is very helpful in this. The best docs to use for this problem is a sports medicine doc in orthopedics that deals specifically with this issue.
If a doctor is telling you the only thing that can be done is cortisone shots, get another doctor ASAP.
I know this from experience with tennis elbow personally.
Long story short, went to primary with the problem, he diagnosed tennis elbos immediatley and sent me to orthopedic surgeon. He diagnosed a torn tendon and tennis elbow. Had MRI and doc said it confirmed the torn tendon.
Surgery to repair, what turned out to be a non existent torn tendon and complicated the whole thing. I only found out that the tendon wasn't torn when I ended up getting another opinion quite a few months later. 3 months after surgery, he finally sent me for occupational therapy.
Now I had OT telling me I couldn't have had a torn tendon because I could bend the arm. When first doc wanted to do more surgery to correct what didn't work the first time.
That's when I went to a sports medicine orthopedist and found out that the radiologists read the MRI correctly and the Doc was wrong.
What I learned was that tennis elbow is caused my microscopic tears in flexor pronator tendon (the one the 1st doc said I had torn off). the proper treatment is 2 weeks of as little usage of the affected arm as possible, ice to decrease swelling and inflamation, anti inflammatories for the pain. Then, occupational therapy and a custom made molded splint, made by a sports medicine occupational therapist. With the OT you learn to properly stretch the muscles and tendons of the affected arm. Then you start a slow weight strenghening program that can take several weeks or a couple of months. You will be given a program to follow at home to continue with and should be healed.
In my case, because of the needless surgery and imobilization of one arm for several months, I developed the same problem in the other arm. I also have permenent loss of upper arm strength in both arms especially the original arm and permenent nerve inflamation as well.
Had I been properly treated from the beginning, I would have no problems now, no permenent disabilities.
My neighbor developed the same thing a year ago and is in her early 60's. I sent her to my docs, who treated her properly right away, and she healed fine.

Don't ignore the problem and settle for cortisone shots and being told there is nothing to treat this. Cortisone can only be given 2 or 3 times, then it can cause serious damage to the muscles of the arm. Being told there is nothing to treat this is nothing more than a lie.

Good luck to all of you. You can be healed. don't end up like me with permenent problems.

    Bookmark   March 26, 2006 at 3:05AM
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Gee Fran, you've been through a lot. I hope time will finish the healing process. Your post seems like a reminder to consider second opinions, although that seems such a nuisance sometimes. I felt surfergal should see a doctor because she is in so much pain and can barely do anything with the arm.

    Bookmark   March 26, 2006 at 9:38AM
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On his radio program, Dr. Dean Adell (sp?) suggested getting a botox shot for tennis elbow.

    Bookmark   March 26, 2006 at 1:18PM
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socks12345, your're right, surfergal needs to see a doc ASAP. A different doc than she was using as he is not knowledgable in the proper treatment. She is only making the problem worse by not getting proper treatment to heal.

Marie26, botox, just like cortisone, is just a pain reliever, if it works and it doesn't work on everyone. What is really needed is proper treatment, molded splints and occupational therapy. Without those treatments, the tennis elbow will never heal, you will just compound the problem, do further damage to the tendons, muscles and nerves and end up in my shoes. Permenant damage and loss of some of not all function in one or both arms.

Surfergirl, please get yourself to a sports medicine orthopedic doc that specializes in hands and arms. You will be amazed at how he/she can help you.


    Bookmark   March 26, 2006 at 3:40PM
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Here is a good link with the information you need

Here is a link that might be useful: American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons

    Bookmark   April 5, 2006 at 4:11PM
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surfergal, I don't know how to treat your elbow, but I use the computer daily and I switched to a new chair at one point. Then my arm started hurting a bit each day. I was like, oh no! carpal tunnel syndrome! I tried different positions, then on a whim I removed the arm from the chair - I had been resting my arm on it while using the mouse. Voila! No more pain. So I got another new chair that has arms but is large enough so that I don't rest my arm on the chair arm.

That change fixed my problem. Try different things like that also and see if it alleviates the problem.

    Bookmark   April 5, 2006 at 6:30PM
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I posted this for gardeners who had trouble bending but it will work for tennis elbow's too because it has to do with joint recovery and increased in bending. This stuff called Micosamine is made from dehydrated cow milk. It's pretty effective.

Here are the studies i posted in the other forum. Hope this works :).

Zenk JL, Helmer TR, Kuskowski MA. (2002) The effects of milk protein concentrate on the symptoms of osteoarthritis in adults: an exploratory, randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial. Cur Ther Res 63(7):430-442

    Bookmark   June 6, 2008 at 3:03PM
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I realize that I'm now posting more than three years after the original posting, but I've found recent success combating tennis elbow just by icing my elbow right after I play. Some of the pain, I think, can be caused by bad technique and my lack of strength in my arm, but immediately after every time I play (at least a few times a week), I ice my elbow now. It's really helped.

For those that want to try it, you can try bringing an ice pack and a towel in a cooler every time you play. Then wrap the ice pack around your elbow with the towel. There's also a product now on the market called SootheMate which makes this whole thing easier. You can Google it and check out their website to find out more.

Just remember, ice helps reduce inflammation and really only works when you apply it right after you play. It's certainly easier and IMO, more effective, than other treatments.

    Bookmark   March 21, 2009 at 8:45PM
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I was just diagnosed with Tennis Elbow! The only thing I've done differently in the past few weeks is use a small shovel in my flower bed digging out weeds.

Has anyone had luck with using a brace or excercise ball? I've checked out a lot of videos. My arm hurts on the inside of my forearm...

Any advice or tips to help with this would be greatly appreciated!!

    Bookmark   April 25, 2013 at 2:48PM
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I originally posted on my tennis elbow back in 2006. Best advice is rest-rest-rest and take anti-inflammatory. Mine was so bad I couldn't even extend my arm at the table to take something.

Good luck!


    Bookmark   April 25, 2013 at 5:45PM
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Hey im suffering from tennis elbow at the moment does anyone know whether orthotic supports help with the recovery or not? Cheers! :) ouch my elbow hurt just typing this out.,..

    Bookmark   September 19, 2013 at 1:21PM
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Have you been diagnosed by an orthopedic specialist that you do have tennis elbow?

If so, you should have been sent to an occupational therapist for treatment.

Depending on the severity of the tennis elbow, will determine what the OT will need to work with you on, but it usually is a custom made wrist spint to use, special exercises and sometimes an aircast for tennis elbow can and is used.

The quickest and best treatment is proper diagnosis from an orthopedic specialist and then occupational therapy.
Without the therapy, it can turn into a long, long recovery time, and could result in more injury to your arm, the tendon and could eventually result in permanent microscopic tears of the tendon that can leave you weak and limited in the use of your arm.

    Bookmark   September 19, 2013 at 3:58PM
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I would love to suggest you go to physiotherapist.

    Bookmark   July 24, 2014 at 1:40AM
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Sorry to hear you have been diagnosed with tennis elbow.

I've been there myself.

In the short term, the pain medication should help with your pain and symptoms but it is not a long term solution unfortunately.

The first thing you need to do is stay away from activities and movements that involve repetitive motions using your affected arm.

Secondly, you need to build the strength back up in your arm.

What worked for me was a Doctor approved home treatment program for tennis elbow.

You can find it over at

Good luck, hope this helps.

    Bookmark   March 11, 2015 at 4:37AM
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