What is Golfer’s elbow?
Golfer’s elbow refers to irritation or inflammation of a tendon. Tendons are tough tissues that connect the elbow to the wrist and aid in bending the wrist towards the palm. In short, the medical condition is a type of tendinitis. This is primarily caused by injury or overuse of tendons, leading to small tears. The damage to the tendons, which causes pain on the inside of the elbow, leads to inflammation and, hence, pain. Golfer’s elbow is known by various other names like baseball elbow, forehand tennis elbow, and suitcase elbow. In medical terminology, it is called medial epicondylitis.
Causes of Golfer’s Elbow
Golfer’s elbow occurs when excessive force is exerted on the wrist and the fingers while bending the palm towards the wrist. Repetitive stress causes injury or damage to the tendons that are in control of the wrist and the fingers. Such repetitive wrist motions are especially common in sports activities like golf, among various others.
Other instances where golfer’s elbow is a common occurrence are:
Risk Factors of Golfer’s elbow
Below are the possible risk factors of the medical condition:
Symptoms of Golfer’s elbow
Some of the most common symptoms of Golfer’s elbow are as follows:
Diagnosis for Golfer’s Elbow
The diagnostic process for the condition typically follows the below procedure:
Physical examination: The medical practitioner is likely to place your arm on a flat surface with the palm side up. You will then be asked to raise your forearms by bending your elbow while applying pressure on the arms. You are most likely to feel medial epicondyle pain on the inside of the elbows.
Enquiry: The healthcare practitioner may ask you about your daily activities and whether you face any obstacles in completing them.
Medical tests: Although a physical examination is usually sufficient in diagnosing a golfer’s elbow, the medical practitioner may recommend an X-ray of the arm to confirm the medical condition.
Treatment for Golfer’s elbow
The following are some of the medial epicondylitis treatment options available for the medical condition:
Wrist extensions: Place the affected hand and a table or on the knee comfortably. Make sure that the wrist hangs over the edge of the table or the knee. Now, place a weight weighing 1 pound in the suspended hand, and raise and lower it gradually, as many times as recommended by your doctor.
Finger extensions: Put all the fingertips very close together and wear a rubber band around them. Slowly pull apart the fingertips to as far as the rubber band allows.
Ball squeezes: Take a soft rubber ball in the palm of the affected hand. Clasp the ball to make a fist around the ball. Squeeze and release the ball alternatively, and repeat this movement as many times as advised by your doctor.
Pronation and supination of the forearm: Place the affected arm on a table or your knee. Hold a heavy object, like a hammer, in the affected arm, keeping the palm parallel to your body. Rotate the arm, making sure that the palm faces downwards. Repeat this step with the palm facing upwards.
Prevention of Golfer’s elbow
Some measures to prevent the medical condition from recurring or from worsening are as below:
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