Lateral Epicondylitis

Home » Resources » Dictionary » Terms

Definition - What does Lateral Epicondylitis mean?

Lateral epicondylitis, also called tennis elbow, is a health condition by which the tendons along the outer elbow that connect the forearm muscles to the humerus (upper arm) become inflamed or sore due to repeated stress or overuse. A direct blow to the tendons can also serve as a culprit for tennis elbow. There are stages of pain that can begin in the forearm/outer elbow and radiate into the wrist.

SureHire explains Lateral Epicondylitis

A doctor will look at different factors that play into the equation of a case of lateral epicondylitis. Jobs that involve manipulating object(s) (i.e., twisting) can cause tennis elbow as one example. Since it is not limited to athletes, daily activities and a medical history backed by a possible X-ray will dismiss or support tennis elbow as the source of chronic pain. The tendons connecting the forearm to the outer (lateral) elbow serve as a coupling point between the muscles and the elbow joint. When the tendons fray or tear, the load-bearing displacement becomes harder to complete tasks. As a result, people are likely to notice fine motor skills (i.e., grasping/gripping) and gross motor skills (i.e., lifting) worsen with pain.

The lateral epicondyle is the bony bump along the outer elbow where many people report pain sensitivity. A plan of care tailored to the patient's recovery needs is often consistent with the rate of progression. In some cases, symptoms of lateral epicondylitis can heal on their own in a short time. However, some people may require long-term therapy to track the course of symptoms. Physical therapy, light work duties, and regular stretches can help the tendons heal. Also, a brace worn around the forearm below the elbow can help temper the leverage from repeated forces/strain placed on the tendons in a case of lateral epicondylitis.

Subscribe to SureNews!

Get your Reasonable Suspicion Checklist! Join our community and get access to more resources like this! Emails are sent monthly, so no need to worry, we will not fill up your inbox.