Medial Epicondylitis is often referred to as Golfers Elbow. It is in some ways similar to tennis elbow. When flexing and pronating the wrist, the tendons of the muscles in the forearm can become inflamed. These attach to the inside of the elbow and run into the hand and fingers. The anterior forearm contains lots of muscles which are involved with flexing the digits of the hand. The tendons of these muscles come together in a common tendinous sheath, which originates from the medial epicondyle of the humerus at the elbow joint. In response to minor injury, the point of insertion becomes inflamed.
When making a golf swing the tendon is stressed, which is where the name ‘Golfer’s elbow’ comes from. However many people develop this condition, and have never held a golf club, or attempted a golf swing. All of the flexors of the fingers and the pronators of the forearm insert at the medial epicondyle of the humerus.
If there is local warmth of swelling then ice is helpful over that area. If not some heat onto the muscles can help reduce the puling onto the bone. Local mobilisation exercise to the wrist can sometimes help. Non steroidal anti inflammatory or painkilling drugs can be beneficial.
Golfer elbow is normally an entire arm problem. So treating the surround joints and muscles reduces pressure on elbow. Sometimes the elbow has either had a reduction in range of movement or the ligaments have become over stretched. This leads to shortening or strain of the local muscles of the forearm. So we start working on the surrounding area. This will improve the range of movement in the joints and reduce the tension in the muscles. The treatment starts to become more local as symptoms improve. Advice on altering activities, rest / breaks from computer us, ergonomic (Desk set up), Stretching the surrounding joints. Then in the future some strengthening of the area in the longer term can be helpful.