Elbow tendinopathy / tendonitis also called "tennis elbow" and "golf elbow" is a problem with a tendon causing elbow pain, swelling and weakness. Tendons are strong bands of connective tissue that attach muscles to bones. "Tennis elbow" or "golf elbow" happen when people get older, and muscles get stiff putting strain on tendons. It also caused when people perform a lot of work especially repetitive movements or activity using their elbow and forearm.
Health care providers can diagnose this condition by asking questions and examining affected extremity. Occasionally it is necessary to do ultrasound to assess affected tendon.
Treatment includes stretching, concentric and eccentric exercises, massage to break adhesions, use of braces, pain relieving medications “NSAID’s” that include ibuprofen (brand names: Advil, Motrin) and naproxen (brand name: Aleve), topical nitroglycerin, injections of corticosteroids or biologic therapies such as platelet-rich plasma (PRP) injection and multiple other therapies.
Seldom, “tennis” or “golf elbow” requires surgery which might be considered if other treatments do not help after many months. Most of the time, this condition gets better without surgery.