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In discussing acupuncture for tennis elbow, I contrast the condition with “golfer’s elbow” and explain that the acupuncture treatment for both conditions follows the same principles of Japanese acupuncture.

Ironically, tennis elbow is not always due to playing the game of tennis, although that is where the name of the condition originated. “Tennis elbow” can be the result of handyman activity or any type of activity that requires specific manipulation and strength in the lower forearm.

Continued, repetitive action can bring on inflammation of the elbow, a condition that we call “tennis elbow”. This type of injury relates to the outer, lower part of the elbow, whereas pain on the inside of the elbow is considered to be “golfer’s elbow”.

So, one sport (golf) has the tendency to irritate the inside of the elbow while the other sport (tennis) has the tendency to irritate the outside of the elbow. But I work with surfers and computer geeks as well for this latter condition. Computer technicians, who work on computers on a daily basis (it is their livelihood), experience tennis elbow from operating the mouse and the computer.

Basically, tennis elbow from an Oriental Medicine perspective is an inflammation, an inflammatory condition (also recognized by Western medicine). In traditional Japanese Acupuncture, we look for the underlying connections as to why that inflammation has become so irritating, why it does not resolve easily.

Tennis elbow is commonly very, very difficult to resolve. Normally, anti-inflammatory medication is prescribed by Western medicine. While that can be successful, the prolonged use of anti-inflammatory medicine can have some deleterious effects on the body, particularly on the digestive system.

Personally, I favour the acupuncture approach where the side effects are far more positive for the whole body. Japanese acupuncture for tennis elbow can be extraordinarily effective and the curative effects can be long lasting.

acupuncture for tennis elbowSee Alan Jansson on video talking about his experience with treating these conditions.