GOLFER'S ELBOW


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related talks: ulnar fracture (another type of broken forearm); children's broken forearm (both bone forearm fracture); radial head fracture (type of broken elbow); broken wrist; broken elbowbroken armswollen elbow
 

What is "Golfer's Elbow" (medial epicondylitis)?

Golfer's elbow is an inflammatory condition of along the inside of the elbow and forearm called “medial epicondylitis”.  Inflammation occurs at the origin of the muscles that flex your wrist (move the wrist downward).  The condition typically occurs in active people, participating in sports like tennis, squash, racquetball, and golf (sports with repetitive twisting around the elbow and forearm).

How is "Golfer's Elbow" (medial epicondylitis) diagnosed?

The common symptoms of Golfer's Elbow are pain on the inner side of the elbow, and often weakness in grip strength. This weakness actually occurs because of the inflammation and swelling causes compression on the nearby ulnar nerve (one study demonstrated that almost 60% of people with medial epicondylitis also had some nerve compression).  The ulnar nerve is the cause of pain when you whack your "funny bone".

How is "Golfer's Elbow" (medial epicondylitis) treated?

Treatment of Golfer's Elbow is similar to tennis elbow (see talk) which involves a stepwise treatment, starting from less invasive to more invasive.  

Initially people should use icing, anti-inflammatories, activity modification, stretching and strength training. 

If the pain persists then a steroids injection can provide fast relief (although the pain may come back once the medication has worn off in a few weeks).  

Surgery can be useful in cases that dont respond to any conservative methods after a few months.  The procedure releases the thick fibrous band of tissue around the wrist flexor tendon (the FCU) and this will relieve the compression around the nerve and improve pain symptoms

How well does it heal and what complications can occur?

This condition typically resolves with nonsurgical treatments, and steroids are often effective in cases where basic anti-inflammatories and icing fail to show improvement.