Golfer’s elbow (also known as medial epicondylagia or medial epicondylitis) is a fairly common orthopedic condition that is seen more frequently in those that play golf, however anyone who performs similar repetitive arm movements can develop it as well.
What is Golfer’s Elbow / Medial Epicondylitis?
Golfer’s elbow primarily involves the elbow hinge joint and is the result of over-activity or abuse of the muscles along this joint. The pain is more severe along the inner aspect of the elbow where the muscles and tendons attach to the bone. It may extend to the arm and wrist of the affected arm. Similar in patho-physiology to tennis elbow, however Golfer’s Elbow involves the medial or inner aspect of forearm. The key movement that causes golfer`s elbow is resisted wrist flexion and pronation.
Golfers Elbow Signs and Symptoms:
The characteristic signs and symptoms of Golfers Elbow / medial epicondylitis include:
- moderate to severe pain along the inner aspects of elbow (usually of the dominant arm);
- stiffness and limitation of movement that may be aggravated by actions as simple as clenching one’s fingers or making a fist;
- impaired sensation, numbness and tingling along the medial forearm and arm due to pressure on the nerve.
How does Golfer’s elbow develop?
Golfers elbow develops from a repeated overuse or abuse of the muscles and tendons that support hand and forearm movement. Flexing your fingers and wrists is controlled by the anterior forearm. The tendons of these muscles meet in the tendinous sheath fitted into the medial epicondyle of the humerus. A minor injury or intense and repeated stress to this area can cause inflammation and result in Golfer’s Elbow. Some activities that lead to Golfer’s Elbow are:
- repeated swinging of a racquet or golf club ;
- moderate weightlifting;
- intense gripping as required when rock climbing
- the forceful hand motion typically used in throwing a ball;
- any repeated hand movement that twists the forearm such as turning a door knob or shaking someone’s hand.
A further significant factor in the development of Golfer’s Elbow or other muscle inflammatory condition is advanced age. As we age, our muscle fibers thicken and become less elastic and we become more vulnerable to even minor trauma. So, it requires less to over-use or mis-use muscles and experience complications
Occupations most commonly linked with Golfer’s Elbow are: painters; laborers; lumberjacks; plumbers; and, of course, avid golfers and tennis players both amateur and professional.
Treatments For Golfer’s Elbow & Medial Epicondilitis:
Treatments for Golfers Elbow / Medial Epicondylitis offered at Ace Physio