Tendonitis is inflammation of a tendon. Tendons are composed of fibres and join muscles to bones, ensuring joint mobility. Following repeated movements, friction of the tendon against the bone may cause some of the fibres to become worn. Micro-tears affecting these tendon fibres are accompanied by a painful inflammatory reaction. This inflammation may spread to neighbouring structures, such as the synovial sheath surrounding the tendons. Tendonitis can also be caused by repeated micro-trauma (impacts, shocks) to the tendon. The pain of tendonitis is made worse by movements and alleviated by rest.
Lateral epicondylitis is inflammation at the insertion of certain muscles at the top of the forearm at the external part of the elbow. It is caused by repeated movements of the forearm (rotation), wrist (extension) or fingers (extension) during manual activities (building, gardening) or sports activities (backhand pass in tennis, golf swing). It is more commonly known as "elbow tendonitis" or "tennis elbow".
The aim of an orthopaedic solution is to relieve pain (analgesia) and reduce strain on the epicondylar muscle insertion. This is obtained by resting, blocking elbow movements using a made-to-measure heat-mouldable brace or a standard elbow brace (support in slight extension). For milder cases, simply reducing activity is sufficient. However, in both cases, the prevention of recurrences is improved by wearing a tennis elbow cuff, which relieves the traction exerted on the natural muscle insertion.
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