Proof Tennis Elbow Can Come Back Even After Surgery

Suffering from tennis elbow once is bad enough but did you know that you can get it again? It’s true that tennis elbow can come back even after surgery and it is really no surprise as to why this can happen.

As with any injury, once you have it once, you are at high risk of developing it again. Any medical professional will tell you this. Especially if an injury develops on the job or doing something that you spend most of your time doing.

While it is true that tennis players are in the high risk group of getting tennis elbow at least once, it is common that it comes back to strike them more than once, especially if they don’t make adjustments to their technique or cut back on the number of sets they play per week.

But what if you don’t play tennis and your tennis elbow injury developed from doing something else? Is it possible that it can come back – even if you’ve gone under the knife and had surgery?

Surgery for tennis elbow has a low success rate as it is. The reason being is not because surgeons do a bad job of repairing or reattaching your extensor tendon to your arm bone, it is mainly because most individuals who opt for surgery think they can return to normal activities 2 weeks after surgery. This is absolutely impossible!

Then there are the risks associated with the surgery – bleeding and infection. You can learn more about tennis elbow surgery: procedure, recovery time and success rate right here. The facts and stats about it will blow your mind!

It is totally possible to re-injure the identical elbow in which you had tennis elbow in before. It doesn’t matter if it was surgically repaired or not. The question remains how and why does this happen? And what can you do to avoid it?

Many individuals who suffer tendon injuries, especially ones which fall under the category of RSI, are involved in daily activities that are repetitive in nature – there is no denying this fact! Tennis elbow when repaired and cured successfully, individuals such as yourself may inevitably be lured back to the activities that will caused your injury in the first place.

In most circumstances this is when your tennis elbow comes back even worse and more severe than before. What was once a small, tiny tear in your tendon which most likely healed itself overtime, is now a huge rip that will for sure prevent you from using your arm normally for sometime.

The best thing you can do once your extensor tendons is fully cured, as with any tendon injury, is to take it easy prior to return to doing any activities or arm movements that can cause strain on your wrist and/or forearm extensors. As for precautionary measures, a lot of people resort to using an elbow strap, band or brace on their so called cured and fully repaired elbow.

The reasoning behind doing so is that most people feel safer when returning to normal activities since wearing something on your affected elbow will serve as as reminder so it was once injured. Some people put on braces in hope that they return to great form and perform like they once did before their injury setback.

Unless your recovery program the first time around involved strengthening exercises for tennis elbow, your chances of getting tennis elbow again are great. Exercises are the only proven way to get around tennis elbow so it doesn’t come and go. Want to know the best 4 exercises for tennis elbow of all time? You can find them over here.

What we know about tennis elbow is that your Doctor and his colleagues refer to it as lateral epicondylitis. This repetitive injury is degenerative to the point where your extensor tendon starts to break up and tear. The result is extreme pain at the bony point of your outer elbow. And that is just the start of your symptoms.

But what does tennis elbow look like if you were able to view your damaged tendon up close and personal? What would that picture look like?

A medical professional or lab technician would let you know that if you examined your extensor tendons under a microscope, it would be filled with holes just like a block of Swiss cheese. Others would replicate that of an old piece of string or rope which is past it’s best before date and has started to unravel. The more holes in your tendon or greater strands of tendon which are fraying the higher your pain and the less you can use your arm.

As you are already aware, you can’t get tennis elbow right away. It takes sometime for that tendon to breakdown and start to cause a person pain. Although it starts out as more of a nuisance, you quickly notice your forearm getting tighter, grip getting weaker and outside elbow pain, especially when you press or touch your affected elbow using your finger or a hard object. Even brushing up against someone can be painful.

As for extending your arm to shake hands with a colleague or peer, forget it. Most people will opt to shake hands using their unaffected arm. This can be embarrassing especially if your right arm is affected and you offer your left hand to shake. Just apologize and explain you are suffering from tennis elbow. I’m sure the other person will understand. Who knows, perhaps they too had tennis elbow.

As mentioned before, treatment options that had been used in the past such as wave therapy, braces, cortisone injections or even surgery is not enough to prevent the tendon from breaking down and giving a person problems. Sure you could possibly have gotten some temporary relief the first time around but even after surgery you can still get tennis elbow again, especially when you get back to activities that triggered your condition the first time around.

It is imperative for getting fresh healthy blood for your extensor tendon so that you can jump start the healing and restoration. Drugs, elbow band, and cortisone injections usually are not the answer to improving blood circulation to this part of your elbow. The one proven way to help you improve blood flow for your elbow is together with exercise and massage techniques.

A great massage technique for tennis elbow that will greatly improve blood flow to your damaged tendons is called cross fibre friction massage. You can perform this technique on yourself without having to worry about spending money on a massage therapist. Everything else for tennis elbow only takes time out of your busy day, not to mention the hit it makes to your pocketbook.

Another factor to weigh is how you could recover from tennis elbow once. Chances are create really recovered along with your tendon was definitely not fully strengthened along with thickened properly. It is possible that because the elbow felt far better, you thought you were healed when you truly were not absolutely over your personal injury.

The only way you might know 100 percent that your tennis elbow had been cured, was in case you had an MRI done on your elbow. This would beyond doubt tell you whether your tendon had been healed.

This is a good time to remind you of activities, sports or movements you should avoid so your tennis elbow does not come back or come and go. Any and all movements that put strain and pressure on your wrist and forearm extensors are completely off limits. Activities like playing the piano, tennis, throwing a frisbee or any kind of ball, working out using dumbbells where you arms are extended, painting, using tools such as screwdrivers, hammers.

Even small movements that seem so very innocent such as knitting, peeling potatoes, cutting up vegetables all cause more wear and tear on your already problematic elbow. Contact and combat sports are totally out of the question if you want your elbow to get better.

Always be aware of what you are doing and remind yourself that all it takes is one small move and you are back where you started – suffering from tennis elbow again! I can personally tell you that this injury sucks but please do not give up, it can be beaten but it will take some work on your end. Imagine how great you are going to feel when you no longer have elbow pain.

So now you are aware that tennis elbow can come back, even after surgery – what on earth is best option to ensure you fully mend and recover this time around for good? Have you heard of the number one selling tennis elbow home treatment system? Check out this whiteboard video presentation which shows you how to begin from the comfort and ease of home how you can quickly get over tennis elbow.

Or if you are not serious about curing your tennis elbow once and for all, then keep taking the drugs, wearing elbow braces and/or getting cortisone shots. You know where that gets you – nowhere!


Fay Martinez, PhD, is Carmona Nutrition’s director of curriculum. She leads the development of the organization’s educational programs and courses.

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