Graston Technique Mesa AZ

Graston Technique Mesa AZ

Golfer’s elbow.  Tennis elbow.  Little Leaguer’s elbow.  Medial epicondylitis.  Lateral epicondylitis.  Goes by many names, but they all suck.

Regardless of what you call it, all names relate to some type of elbow pain and I see it frequently in the office.  There are a few exceptions, but most respond very well to the type of treatment approach we use.

Contrast this with typical medical treatment which consists of anti-inflammatories, exercises / physical therapy and possibly steroid injections.  I have written in a previous blog post about how ineffective steroid injections for elbow pain are in the long run that can be read by clicking here.

Overall, the mainstream approach to the treatment of elbow pain has focused on the spot of pain.  This is where we inject. Or we go completely the opposite direction and give oral anti-inflammatories that will effect the entire body, not just the problem area.  (This comment does not even begin to address the problem that the problem is not actually inflammation-driven).

Rehab approaches generally focus on curbing the inflammation (that is not even present) using ultrasound or electrical modalities, but rarely addresses the soft tissue problems really causing the condition.

This particular article addresses just how important the soft tissue (muscles, ligaments, tendons, fascia) are in lateral epicondylalgia (aka tennis elbow).  In it, researchers reviewed several available clinical studies that have demonstrated the presence of myofascial trigger points (MTrPts) in patients with elbow pain.

For anyone to even suggest that the soft tissues would NOT play a role in this type of elbow pain must not treat elbows.  The problem starts in the soft tissues surrounding the elbow long before elbow pain develops.  The pain in the elbow is just the stress point where you feel the imbalance that is present in the soft tissues.  These tissues HAVE to be addressed if you want your elbow pain to resolve.  Massage, instrument-assisted soft tissue techniques (like Graston for elbow pain), Fascial Manipulation or Active Release Technique (ART) need to be part of your treatment plan.  Any treatment from your doctor that doesn’t include these types of treatments should be avoided.

In addition to in-office treatments, there are elbow bands that can take stress off of the area that hurts (you can find high quality braces on Amazon) as well as the Tyler twist using a Therabar (again–you can buy a Therabar on Amazon).  Combining these 3 approaches should help to resolve even some of the toughest cases of elbow pain.