What is Medial Epicondylitis?
Medial epicondylitis is popularly called golfer elbow, baseball elbow, suitcase elbow or forehand tennis elbow. It results in pain starting from the elbow all the way to the wrist on the inside (medial side) of the elbow. The pain is the outcome of damage to the tendons (a tough cord of tissue that connects muscles with bones) that helps bend the wrist towards the palm.
What Causes Medial Epicondylitis?
Medial epicondylitis may occur when a lot of force is applied to bend the wrist towards the palm. This could occur while pitching a baseball or swinging a golf club. Few other possible causes of the condition involve:
● Using a spin serve or serving with great force in tennis
● Using of other hand tools on a regular basis
● Throwing a javelin
● Weak wrist muscles and shoulder muscles
● Using a tennis racket that is too short or too tightly strung
● Chopping wood with an axe
● Using a chainsaw
● Carrying a heavy suitcase
What are the Symptoms of Medial Epicondylitis?
The most widely seen symptom of medial epicondylitis is pain from the elbow to the wrist, along the palm side of the forearm, on the same side as the little finger. Pain can be felt when squeezing a rubber ball or when you bend the wrist towards the palm against resistance.
The symptoms of medial epicondylitis may seem similar to other health conditions. Always see your doctor for a correct diagnosis.
How is Medial Epicondylitis Diagnosed?
The diagnosis of medial epicondylitis can usually be made depending on a physical exam. Your doctor might rest your arm on a table with the palm side up, and tell you to raise your hand against resistance by bending your wrist. If you are suffering from the condition, you can often feel pain in the inner aspect of the elbow.
How is Medial Epicondylitis treated?
Treatment for medial epicondylitis involves stopping the activity causing the symptoms. It is critical to stop doing the movement that has resulted in the condition in the first place. Treatment may include:
● Anti-inflammatory medicine
● Ice packs in order to reduce inflammation
● Corticosteroid injections
● Physical therapy
● Strengthening exercises
● Surgery (rare)
What Can I Do to Prevent Medial Epicondylitis?
Being cautious of your daily movements can help in avoiding this condition. Some of the most commonly seen suggestions include:
Don't forget to gently stretch your forearm muscles before and after repetitive tasks.
Using proper form while performing repetitive activities like work, or movements associated with a sport.
Using correct body mechanics when moving or lifting objects.
Keeping wrist muscles, forearms, and shoulders strong.
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