Dr. Tom Colletti
Purpose: The purpose of this article is to review lateral epicondylitis with a focus on current management options.
Method: Foundational as well as recent research regarding common and alternative management options for lateral epicondylitis were collected, reviewed, and analyzed in this clinical review article.
Results: There is conflicting evidence regarding the benefit of elbow counterforce orthoses compared to a cock-up wrist splint. There is evidence supporting the use of a lateral epicondylitis corticosteroid injection for pain relief. There is some evidence that dry needling and Botox injections may be a reasonable alternative plan for treatment of resistant lateral epicondylitis.
Conclusion: Lateral epicondylitis can be effectively treated with either an elbow counterforce orthosis or a cock-up wrist splint along with activity modifications. Corticosteroid injections near the extensor carpi radialis brevis tendon insertion at the lateral epicondyle can be effective at relieving pain while the tendon is rested through activity modification and bracing. Dry needling and Botox injections are a possible alternative treatment that can increase blood flow to the area and promote healing. In recalcitrant lateral epicondylitis, surgical intervention may be warranted and has a high patient satisfaction rate.
Smith HJ. A Review of the History, Presentation, and Management of Lateral Epicondylitis. University of Lynchburg DMSc Doctoral Project Assignment Repository. 2021; 3(3).
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