What Is Tennis Elbow?
Tennis Elbow is an aggravating, painful injury of the outer forearm muscles and tendons, but the key question is: What KIND of injury is it?
The video explains how it's (usually) not the kind of injury it's most often described as - It's actually NOT the kind of injury you treat with R.I.C.E. (Rest, Ice, Compression, Elevation).
Learn how Tennis Elbow is usually a gradual 'Chronic' injury and not an 'Acute' injury crisis - In other words, there's usually no tear, no 'strain' - OR even any inflammation!
Video: What Is Tennis Elbow?
What is Tennis Elbow? Is it inflammation? A torn tendon? A video about how it's not the kind of injury usually described, and why the RICE protocol is not the right way to treat it. By: Allen Willette
Learn To Treat Your Own Tennis Elbow Here In The Gold Membership Program:
A full program of easy-to-follow video lessons designed by a professional therapist to help you treat yourself at home. All the therapy techniques, key stretches and essential exercises you need to break that vicious cycle of pain and fully recover.
It's Usually Not A "Big Tendon Tear" Kind Of Injury
Below is a good image showing exactly where the injury is found at the outer elbow (Lateral Epicondyle) - But it's not a good representation of WHAT the injury is...
The picture shows what appears to be a scary-looking major tear in the tendon right where it connects to the bone - But this is misleading.
I want to reassure you that major tendon tears are rarely the cause of Tennis Elbow pain.
Even if you're in a lot of pain and your injury doesn't seem to be healing no matter what you do - that doesn't mean you have a big tear in your tendon.
(There may be some tiny, microscopic damage or tearing, yes, but that's a different thing altogether).
Yes, it IS a tendon injury - But, once again, the injury is usually not the 'Acute' kind. It's usually not a tear (sprain, strain or "pull").
To make a comparison, an acute injury is like a heart attack, which is clearly a sudden, acute crisis.
And a chronic, degenerative injury is more like hardening of the arteries ‘Arteriosclerosis,’ a slow, gradual degenerative condition.
So, the point is that:
- Tennis Elbow is rarely an acute injury crisis, like a heart attack.
- It’s usually more like “hardening of the arteries” a chronic, gradual, degenerative condition,
- And that means it’s usually TendinOSIS (chronic injury) – NOT TendonITIS (acute injury.)
Here's a link to the full article (companion to the video above) about how it's a chronic injury and...
Tennis Elbow Is Usually TendinOSIS Not Tendonitis
This video follows the one above and takes a deeper look at elbow tendon pain and injury.
After all, if Tennis Elbow was just an irritated, inflamed tendon at your elbow – or even a minor tendon tear...
WHY then doesn’t it get better with a little ice, a little rest and a few anti-inflammatories?
Clearly, there must be more to your elbow pain and injury than it seemed at first, (especially if you've been in pain several months!)
So, let’s take a deeper look at:
- The essence of the injury,
- The crucial difference between Tendonitis and TendinOSIS,
- And why this changes everything when it comes to treating it:
How is Tennis Elbow diagnosed?
Part of the confusion comes from how the injury gets diagnosed. It's mostly based on your description of your symptoms and maybe a muscle resistance test or two.
There are no objective tests; no blood or lab tests, and although an MRI can see into the tendons and help with a diagnosis, they are not often prescribed in the early stages of the injury.
Symptoms of Tennis Elbow
Tendon pain and muscle soreness and pain are the main symptoms.
The epicenter of the pain is usually felt right on the bony knob at the outer elbow or just below it toward the wrist - The definitive "Tennis Elbow spot."
And there is often pain, soreness and weakness in some or all of the muscles in your outer forearm, and even your wrist.
Lateral Epicondylitis: The "Official" Technical Term
Technically speaking, the bony knob at your elbow where these tendons attach is your Lateral Epicondyle, and that's where the clinical name for it comes from: Lateral Epicondylitis
It's also often called Elbow Tendonitis (or Tendinitis.)
THREE names for the same thing!? The official medical websites seem to suggest they are more or less the same condition - But in fact they're not:
Inflammation: Why you don't have to chase it
The old, outdated assumption was that the problem and the pain had a lot to do with inflammation
(Those "ITIS" endings of these terms suggests an inflammatory condition) but that's not necessarily so!
For more about why inflammation is not your enemy watch these two videos:
A Complete Self-Help Video Treatment Program
Learn how to treat your own Tennis Elbow and recover at home by watching and following along with simple, step-by-step video lessons in the Gold Members' Program: