Tennis Elbow Diagnosis: What Your Doctor Will Look For
For anyone who suspects that they may have tennis elbow, it is always best to seek out your GP and get their advice. A proper tennis elbow diagnosis test can only be done by someone who is medically trained in this area.
So what can you expect to happen in the diagnosis process, what your Doctor will look for and what steps can you take after you are diagnosed to help speed up your recovery time?
In most medical settings your Doctor will ask some simple questions such as:
- When did you first notice your pain?
- What were you doing at the time?
- Has the pain gotten worse?
- Where is the exact location of your pain?
- Does the pain get worse or better when you do certain movements with your arm?
Once these questions have been answered, the Doctor will most likely ask you to present your affected arm to him/her. He/She will most likely support the lower part of your forearm with his/her hand and hold the top of your hand which is palm down facing the floor. Next he/she will ask you to extend your hand upwards towards the ceiling as he/she applies resistance to your hand.
If the pain on the lateral/outside of your elbow increases during this diagnosis test, then it is most likely that you will be diagnosed with tennis elbow.
What factors are known to contribute to tennis elbow?
In light of it’s name, very few people who make visits to their Doctor’s office complaining of tennis elbow, don’t even play tennis or any other racquet sport for the matter. You are more likely to get tennis elbow if you are involved in movements, activities, hobbies or sports that require repetitive and constant pulling and gripping with your palm in a downward facing position.
Ok so now that you have been diagnosed with tennis elbow, where do you go from here and what treatment options work best?
First you need to be warned that depending on which treatment options you choose, your recovery will most likely take anywhere from 2 weeks to 2 years to fully heal! I know that sounds crazy but it is the truth. So it all comes down to how fast you want to get rid of your injury and whether or not you want a temporary fix or a more permanent solution. Hopefully you will choose the later.
Once your diagnosis is complete, your Doctor may recommend that you head next store to the pharmacy and purchase an elbow brace. What you should know is that while they provide you with a feeling of support, truthfully all they are good for is to remind people that you have an injured elbow and to avoid coming into contact with you. Tennis elbow braces do not help speed up your healing time despite their popularity.
Many people believe that they can pull on their elbow brace and return to any and all activities that aggravates their injury even more. An elbow brace is great at hiding whether or not you are making your condition worse. It is only when you take it off that the true effect is felt. And for most people their pain is much greater.
Another option that your Doctor may “lay on the table” once you have been diagnosed is cortisone injections. If you are anything like me, you hate the thought of getting any kind of needles or shots and squirm at the mere sight of one. While these injections for tennis elbow are effective in the short term(no more than 4 weeks), they are not the long term solution that you are looking for.
To get you over the hump in the short term, another option is pain medication. Any sort of anti-inflammatory pill or medication prescribed by your Doctor may provide pain relief, but you should know that at some point you will have to stop popping pills and take more aggressive measures if you ever want to fully recover and heal.
A more expensive alternative that may be offered once your diagnosis has been complete is shock wave therapy. You can expect to be hooked up to a shock wave machine that sends electrical impulses through your skin and into your damaged tendons and muscles.
Does it hurt? It all depends on your pain tolerance. I have personally experienced it and for me it felt similar to the pain of getting a tattoo. You can expect to experience some reddening of your skin and possibly some bruising of your elbow a day or two after.
More than one session is usually recommended and if you don’t have extended health insurance, it can cost you $250 per session.
But there is hope once your tennis elbow diagnosis has been completed and you’ve gotten over the bad news!
You can self-treat and heal your tennis elbow injury without ever leaving the comfy confines of your own home. That means that you won’t have to spend a single dime elbow braces, pills, cortisone shots or expensive Physical Therapy(if that is what your Doctor recommends) because you can start treating your tennis elbow using the exact same techniques and movements that a Physiotherapist would charge you $120 per session to do.
What’s even better is that once you have been diagnosed and it’s been confirmed that you have tennis elbow, all you need to learn are 5 simple steps that you can do in the evening, while sitting on your couch or comfy chair watching your favorite television show. Yes, it’s that easy …
But it gets even better because this easy-to-follow and proven formula doesn’t require you to purchase any sort of exercise equipment or medical gadgets to get started. In fact, if you have a water bottle, broomstick or can of soup available, you can get started with this remarkably simple home treatment program right now, this very minute!
If you want to fast track and speed up your recovery from tennis elbow after your diagnosis, you really should watch this video tutorial that will show you just how fast and easy your treatment can be, so you no longer suffer with nagging elbow pain.