Sport Hand Injuries

There are a variety of common sports injuries of the hand and wrist. These include mallet finger, skier thumb, golfer elbow, tennis elbow, wrist sprain and tendinitis.

Golfer’s elbow (medial epicondylitis)


Medial epicondylitis or golfer’s elbow, is tendonitis of the inside of the elbow joint. Golfer’s elbow is similar to tennis elbow or lateral epicondylitis. The repetitive overuse of these muscles causes inflammation of the tendons, the connective tissue between the muscle and the bone. While golf is a common cause of medial epicondylitis, it can also be caused by any repetitive motion or sharp sudden movement that involves the elbow

Common symptoms of golfer’s elbow include:

  • Pain at the inside of the elbow
  • Elbow stiffness
  • Numbness or tingling in fingers
  • Hand and/or wrist weakness

Treatment of golfer’s elbow can include physical therapy, anti-inflammatories, splinting and stretching. In some cases, costisone injections may be suggested when other treatments are not effective. In the case of golfer’s elbow, surgery is rarely an option, but the best way to know for sure is to schedule an exam with a physician who specializes in hand, wrist and elbow conditions.

Tennis elbow (lateral epicondylitis)


Tennis elbow or lateral epicondylitis, is a tendonitis of the outside of the elbow unlike golfer’s elbow which affects the inside of the elbow. Tennis elbow is mainly caused by repetitive use during tennis or any other activity that uses the hand or wrist muscles. These muscles share a common tendon which is connected to the portion of the elbow bone known as the lateral epicondyle. Tiny tears happen over time and with age, the body has a more difficult time repairing itself which leads to symptoms of tennis elbow.

Symptoms of tennis elbow or lateral epicondylitis include:

  • Pain while bending wrist
  • Tenderness or pain in elbow
  • Difficulty picking up heavy objects
  • Weakness in hand and wrist

Treatment for tennis elbow includes physical therapy, stretching, rest and/or anti-inflammatory medication. If the symptoms of tennis elbow persist with the above treatment then cortisone injections and minimally invasive surgery are other options for tennis elbow.

by Hand Specialist Malaysia