If you suffer with periodic elbow pain or stress, you may have developed or are in the process of developing one of two common elbow conditions.The two most common elbow conditions that athletes and non-athletes are both familiar with are tennis elbow and golfer’s elbow. In spite of the sport-related names, tennis elbow and golfer’s elbow can affect anyone. More technically speaking, tennis elbow is called lateral
epicondylitis and golfer’s elbow medial epicondylitis. Both conditions are very similar, except for the fact that they affect opposite sides of the elbow. Lateral epicondylitis affects the outer part of the elbow, whereas medial epicondylitis occurs at the inner aspect. Both of these conditions commonly develop as a result of repetitive use of
the arm and/or elbow as with swinging a tennis racquet or golf club, thus their respective names. If you experience pain near the elbow joint or where the muscles of the
forearm connect to the elbow you may be suffering with one of these common conditions.
Patients who suffer with either of these elbow conditions tend to have similar appearances during their physical exam. One common
characteristic with either condition is that the patient normally will have a misalignment of their shoulder blade (scapula), and their upper arm
(humerus) at the glenohumeral (shoulder) joint.
With healthy alignment of the shoulder, you should be able to engage in racquet sports and other repetitive activities without experiencing elbow pain.
However when there is a misalignment involving the scapula or shoulder joint, the elbow will experience abnormal bio-mechanics. This will cause excessive pressure
and tension to develop in the muscles and tendons that control the forearm and elbow.
Shoulder and scapular misalignment are often therefore a predisposing factor to developing tennis or golfer’s elbow. Gentle chiropractic adjustments to the scapula, shoulder and upper extremity will improve the bio-mechanics and restore normal elbow function. This will alleviate much of the physical stress which allowed the elbow condition to develop. Proper alignment and function will create an environment for natural healing within the elbow joint, muscles and tendons.