Golfer’s Elbow

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Most of the muscles that flex your wrist are attached to a bony bump on the inside of your elbow called the “medial epicondyle.” Sometimes, through injury or overuse, the site where these muscles originate can become irritated or inflamed. This condition is called “medial epicondylitis”, or “golfer’s elbow.”

Although the condition is named “golfer’s elbow,” over 90% of those affected are not even athletes, much less golfers. Nonetheless, the condition is more common in certain sports, especially golf, throwing, bowling, football, archery, and weight lifting. Occupations that require heavy gripping or repeated hand movements, like carpentry or typing, can predispose you to this condition. Smokers and people who are obese are more likely to experience this condition.

Medial epicondylitis is the most frequent cause of pain on the “inside” of your elbow but is 3-10 times less likely that its “outside” counterpart- lateral epicondylitis (i.e. “tennis elbow”). Medial epicondylitis is most common between the ages of 40 and 60. The condition strikes the dominant arm in over 3⁄4 of cases. Your symptoms will likely include a dull aching pain over the bump on the inside of your elbow that becomes more intense with use. As the condition progresses, you may notice grip weakness or limitations when shaking hands, grasping objects, and opening jars. Be sure to tell your doctor if you notice numbness or tingling traveling toward your hand.

 

If left untreated, medial epicondylitis can last indefinitely. Studies show that up to 40% of untreated patients suffer prolonged discomfort, some as long as three years. Fortunately, conservative treatment like the type provided in our office is effective for relieving this condition. Our office may prescribe an elbow “counterforce brace” to help dampen stress to the irritated area. This type of brace should not be used in patients who have numbness or tingling radiating into their fingers. Some patients may benefit from a “wrist splint” that is used at night to allow your tendon to heal in a lengthened position. Using ice or ice massage over your elbow can help limit pain. Your home exercises will play an important role in your recovery.

Initially, you may need to avoid activities that cause an increase in pain, like gripping, lifting, golfing, throwing balls, or swinging a racquet. Be sure to warm up properly and stretch prior to any heavy physical activity. Smokers would benefit from quitting. Overweight patients should consider increasing their aerobic activity to shed excess pounds.

If you or someone you know suffers from this condition, call our office today. Our doctors are experts at relieving many types of pain including elbow injuries.

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Acupuncture and Tennis Elbow

Acupuncture for tennis elbow

#Acupuncture treatment has been shown to help provide significant pain relief for tennis elbow.

Acupuncture treatment can help to reduce inflammation and improve blood flow to injured areas to aid and speed healing of various types of tendonitis. Pain in the outer elbow or forearm pain are signs of tennis elbow.

Dr. Natalie Carriere is now offering Acupuncture treatment at #AberdeenChiropractic. Call 204-586-8424 today for your initial consultation and treatment!

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Pain from trigger points in the supraspinatus muscle.

The supraspinatus muscle makes up part of the rotator cuff. It is responsible for assisting in shoulder abduction as well lateral rotation and stabilizing the shoulder joint. This muscle is often overloaded in labourers and tradesman who have to do a lot of overhead work. Athletes who do a lot of throwing movements will also frequently have Tigger point in this muscle. These trigger points will cause pain to be felt into the shoulder and down the arm, as well as stiffness and weakness.

Supraspinatus trigger points

The supraspinatus muscle is one of the muscles that makes up your rotator cuff. It attaches from the scapula to the humerus. It functions mainly to laterally rotate the arm as well as stabilize the shoulder joint. It also assists in abduction of the arm. This muscle can often harbour stubborn trigger points. These points refer pain into the shoulder, down the arm, into the elbow, and even into the forearm if irritated enough. These points can be effectively treated with trigger point massage therapy.

Trigger points in the pectoralis major muscle.

A very common muscle to become overloaded and damaged, and thus develop trigger points, is the pectoralis major muscle. This is the muscle that makes up the chest. It’s main functions are adduction and internal rotation at the shoulder. Poor rounded shoulder posture is a common cause of pec tightness and trigger points. trigger points in this muscle will produce pain felt into the front of the shoulder, the chest, and down the medial arm. If these symptoms occur in the left pec it can mimick heart pain. In women, these points can be a cause of breast pain and nipple hypersensitivity.

Tricep trigger points and elbow pain.

The triceps muscle is the main extensor of the elbow. It is the muscle in the back part of the arm and travels from the shoulder to the elbow. Trigger points in this muscle will cause pain when trying to straighten the elbow. Tricep trigger points refer pain into both the inside and outside of the elbow and are thus a common cause of both tennis and golfers elbow.

Trigger points in the scalenes

The scalene muscles are located in your neck. They function to stabilize the cervical spine against lateral movement and elevate the first and second rib to assist inspiration. These muscles are often overloaded and develop trigger points from pulling, lifting, and tugging movements, prolonged cough due to illness, shallow breathing mechanics, and poor neck posture. Trigger points in these muscles can refer in two finger-like projections into the chest, other common patterns are into the shoulder, scapula and down the lateral arm, into the thumb and index finger. The scalene can impinge on the brachial plexus causing nerve pain or numbness down the arm. This is called thoracic outlet syndrome.

Why trigger point therapy?

People often think of a massage as a relaxing experience, something they might do occasionally, or give as a gift along with a trip to the spa. Trigger point massage therapy is another kind of massage used to treat pain and physical dysfunction. Trigger points can develop in people from all walks of life. They can affect people of all ages, office workers and labourers, elite and weekend athletes, post surgical patients, people with acute pain from injury and people with chronic pain. Trigger point massage therapy can treat a wide variety of physical conditions such as:

– Migraines

– back pain.

– sciatica

– Carple tunnel syndrome

– achy persistent pain

– pain from Fibromyalgia

– post surgical pain and scarring

– soft tissue injuries related to sports

– TMJ dysfunction

Trigger points in the infraspinatus and shoulder and arm pain.

The infraspinatus muscle is one of the muscles that makes up the rotator cuff. It functions to laterally rotate the shoulder and to stabilize the shoulder joint. Rotator cuff problems are common and can be caused by both acute injuries, or chronic repeditive movements, and poor posture. When this happens trigger points will form causing pain, refered pain, as well as stiffness and weakness. Refered pain from trigger points in the infraspinatus can be felt into the front of the shoulder and down the arm. Trigger points can also produce a sensation the the shoulder joint isn’t “sitting right”. Trigger points must be released to relieve these symptoms.