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Golfer's Elbow

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Last updated June 11, 2022

Golfer's elbow quiz

Take a quiz to find out what's causing your golfer's elbow.

Care Plan

1

First steps to consider

  • You can usually treat golfer’s elbow at home with ice, heat, rest, and ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin).
  • Avoid activities that aggravate symptoms like repetitive wrist and finger motions.
2

When you may need a provider

  • Your pain isn’t improving after trying home treatments for 1–2 weeks.
  • You develop stiffness in the elbow or are unable to perform normal daily activities because of the pain.


Emergency Care

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Go to the ER if you have any of these symptoms:

  • Your elbow is red, hot, and swollen with fever or other signs of infection.
  • Severe pain with elbow motion.
  • You injured your elbow and have severe pain or the elbow is out of place.


Golfer's elbow quiz

Take a quiz to find out what's causing your golfer's elbow.

Take golfer's elbow quiz

What is golfer's elbow?

Golfer's elbow (medial epicondylitis) is a soreness or pain of the elbow caused by inflammation of the tendons that connect the forearm muscles to the inner elbow.

This is usually caused by an injury or doing the same movements over and over. It is similar to tennis elbow but often caused by sports such as golf, bowling, archery, and weight lifting.This can also be caused by day-to-day activities or manual labor requiring repetitive hand and arm motions like lifting or grasping objects.

Symptoms

  • Elbow pain
  • Elbow pain after overuse
  • Pain in the pinky side of the elbow

Treatment

You can usually treat this condition at home with ice and heat, resting your arm, wearing an ace bandage or brace, and taking ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin).

Your doctor may recommend physical therapy to build up strength and maintain your flexibility. If it doesn’t improve within 6-12 months (after trying ibuprofen, rest, and a brace), surgery might be necessary.

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Dr. Rothschild has been a faculty member at Brigham and Women’s Hospital where he is an Associate Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School. He currently practices as a hospitalist at Newton Wellesley Hospital. In 1978, Dr. Rothschild received his MD at the Medical College of Wisconsin and trained in internal medicine followed by a fellowship in critical care medicine. He also received an MP...
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