The Pain & Injury Doctor ONLINE Newsletter

Here is your latest pain relief tip. If it doesn’t apply to you, still take note because life is full of surprises. If you know someone who is dealing with this type of pain, please forward this email to that person– thanks!

Elbow & Forearm Pain; Tennis Elbow

What is Happening:

The tendon that connects your wrist and finger extensor muscles (muscles that make your fingers open and bend up wrist) to your outer elbow is strained and inflamed where it inserts into the bone. This means there are some small tears in it. This can happen from repetitive, hard contraction of these muscles (like a tennis back hand swing), weight lifting the wrong way, push ups and other similar movements.

Recommended Home-Use Products Covered in Today’s Issue:

 

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If your elbow pain started from playing tennis, it could be that you are not using proper form or you are holding the racquet incorrectly. Check with a tennis coach to get help with your swing. The back hand is the stroke that stresses the lateral elbow the most.

If your elbow pain is attributed to prolonged typing on the computer, install software on your computer that reminds you to take a break and stretch, at least every 30 minutes.  StretchClock is such a popular software, as it provides videos of actual people doing stretches.

Treating Elbow and Forearm Strain

For this condition, it is best to temporarily avoid the movement that caused it. The goal is to reduce inflammation and pain through rest, ice and wearing a counter-force forearm brace.

A counter-force brace absorbs some of the pull on the inflamed tendon whenever you have to use your forearm muscles, as in gripping something:

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BandIt Counterforce Brace

This brace is used to help epicondylitis heal faster. The problem with most types of ligament injuries is that they typically involve a joint that you have to use every day. Too much movement too early after an injury onset constantly aggravates it and slows down healing.

If you have epicondylitis (tennis elbow), wrap this brace around the affected forearm at the largest circumference. Wrap it firmly, but not tight. When you grip or move your fingers, some of the force is transmitted to the brace, relieving some stress to the tendon where it inserts into the elbow. This allows it to heal faster.

More Information…

Ice your elbow with an ice wand to reduce inflammation for the first few days, and apply red light therapy. As it gets less acute, do myofascial therapy using the Myobar to reduce scar tissue adhesions. Watch this video I made where I demonstrate how to do it:

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TendLite Personal Red Light Therapy Device

Studies show that red light has therapeutic effects on human tissue, similar to how sunlight stimulates plants to produce energy (sugar) in their leaves. It stimulates cells to increase ATP (energy) production, which enhances tissue repair and regeneration, and reduces inflammation.

The TendLite device is a simple to use tool effective for common strains, sprains, joint pain and any soft tissue condition involving inflammation. It works great in conjunction with myofascial therapy and topical anti-inflammatory agents.

More Information…

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MyoBar Myofascial Therapy Tool

Therapists use this instrument to treat ligaments and tendons that have scar tissue adhesions, which usually develop after soft tissues experience injury.  Scar tissue is brittle and invites re-injury if it is allowed to accumulate.   The action of this tool breaks apart scar tissue and increases blood flow, improving ligament and tendon mobility. Use right after red light therapy for best results.

More Information…

Rub Penetrex or comfrey root salve on your elbow to accelerate healing. You can use either agent as the emollient for your myofascial therapy.

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Penetrex

Penetrex is a best-selling topical pain relieving cream that delivers Vitamin B6, Pyridoxine, Arnica, MSM, Cetyl Myristoleate, Glucosamine, Boswellia Serrata and other proven pain relief elements deep into muscles, nerves, ligaments & tendons. The resulting relief is quick, strong & long lasting.   Apply it all over the painful region before or after red light therapy. It can also be used as an emollient for instrument assisted myofascial therapy.

More Information…

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Comfrey Root Salve

Dr. Theiss comfrey root ointment gives remarkable results for minor sprains and strains. Comfrey root extract contains a natural substance called allantoin, which hydrates cells, helps remove dead cells and facilitates cellular regeneration in injured tissue.   Great for ligament and tendon sprains and strains, minor cuts  and bone bruising.  Do not take internally or on large open wounds, as high concentrations are toxic to the liver.

More Information…

Once the pain has gone, prevent re-injury by strengthening the tendon and arm muscles. This can include biceps curls and wrist extensions. For the wrist extension exercise, hold a 5-7 pound dumbbell in your hand, elbow bent 90 degrees and palm facing down. Keeping your forearm stationary and parallel to the floor, raise your wrist up, and lower, in a controlled fashion. Do 20 reps twice a day.


BOTTOM LINE:  Epicondylitis and similar soft tissue sprains/strains with inflammation can be treated with ice, rest and bracing. To speed up healing, apply red light therapy and a topical anti-inflammatory cream. For rehabilitating (restoring ligament strength and function) use the myobar to smooth out any rough scar tissue, and strengthen the tendon by doing wrist extensions while holding a five pound barbell.

These are some of the products I recommend to my patients with epicondylitis.  They are generally safe to use, but check with your doctor. ~Dr. Perez

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For more detailed, step-by-step guidance on permanently resolving chronic muscle and joint pain, visit

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The information contained in this email and on www.PainandInjuryDoctor.com is not intended to replace a one-on-one relationship with a qualified health care professional and is not intended as a medical directive. It is provided as a sharing of knowledge and information from the research and experience of Dan Perez, D.C. Every person is unique, and individual cases of pain are therefore unique. Dr. Perez encourages readers of PainandInjuryDoctor.com to use available sources of information to help them make a more educated and informed decision regarding their health, in partnership with one or more qualified health care professionals.

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