Medial Epicondylitis

Pain and inflammation on the inner side of elbow (medial epicondyle of the elbow), where the tendons that connect the muscles that flex the wrist and fingers attach to the bony bump on the inside of the elbow is often due to medial epicondylitis, or Golfer's elbow.

Due to overuse, these tendons develop microscopic tears resulting in pain. Although this spot is the most common, inflammation can occur anywhere along the tendons.

Symptoms:

  • Pain and tenderness on the inner side of your elbow or inner side of the forearm
  • Stiffness in the elbow
  • Weakness in hands and wrists
  • Numbness or tingling sensation that radiates into one or more fingers – usually the ring and little finger

Causes/Risk Factors:

  • Repetitive use or stress causes damage to the muscles and tendons that control your wrist and fingers
  • Activities related to golfer's elbow – golf, racket sports, baseball, softball, other throwing sports, weight training, and other activities such as painting or typing that involves repetitive wrist, hand or arm movements
  • Gender – most common in men ages 20 to 48
  • Muscular weakness or imbalances leading to compensations and excessive strain on muscles and tendons
  • Postural deviations placing undue strain on specific muscles or tendons


Physical therapy can speed recovery through decreasing pain and inflammation through the use of manual techniques, modalities, taping, or bracing. The development of a specific exercise programs will help stretch tightened muscles and strengthen weakened postural muscles. Therapists also educate about ergonomics, posture, and prevention.