Osteopaths treat tennis elbow everyday. But what exactly is it?
Once thought of as an injury exclusively to tennis players. Tennis elbow is pain on the outside or lateral aspect of the elbow. However if you're reading this you most likely don't play tennis, you are most likely a tradie or an office worker; sitting at a computer clicking your mouse and keyboard all day.
Because that's how it develops.
Overuse of your fingers with your palms facing down stretches the muscles and tendons on the outside of your forearm.
The injury, (as you can see in the picture below) is very close to the bone where the tendon attaches. The white part is the tendon, the browny-red part is know as the belly of the muscle.
What makes this injury so frustrating is the tendon is the part which is damaged. Tendons have very poor blood supply. (which is why they are a lighter colour than the belly. Now when an area of the body has poor blood supply, it takes longer to heal. The blood carries all the nutrients and oxygen to an injured area.
So how can osteopathy help me?
Osteopathy treatment helps in two ways. The first, we use manual therapy to increase blood supply to that tendon. And in some cases we use dry needling to rapidly increase blood flow to the tendon.
The second, we take a long term and more holistic approach by increasing your wrist and shoulder mobility. This can involve stretches, massage, strengthening exercises to name a few. If your wrist and shoulder are free to function the best they can, then your elbow will have a fighting chance at a quicker and more sustainable recovery.
Prevention is more important than fixing injuries. So it's our job as your therapist to not only get you back to 100%. But to make sure this pain/injury never comes back again.
You don't have to live with this forever.