Whether you think your elbow pain is the dreaded tennis elbow or your Doctor has just broken the news to you …
The first thing to keep in mind is that it’s not the end of the world.
Your elbow will get better.
That being said, you need to know what your options are – right?
And if you are like most people, you want your pain and discomfort gone as quickly as possible.
So what can a sonogram machine for tennis elbow really tell you?
Should you invest the money in getting one done?
These are 2 great questions that I will answer for you.
This machine is often referred to as an ultrasound.
It gives elbow sufferers such as yourself, a more detailed indication of just how bad the damage is to the soft tissues which connect at your elbow.
The scary thing is that most Doctors won’t even recommend using this machine in their diagnosis.
Why is this?
For the simple fact that most Doctors are not specialized in the treating tennis elbow.
They are much more interested in performing their own test for tennis elbow and then sending you out the door with a prescription for pain medication and a referral to a PT.
There can be a boat load of reasons why Doctors shy away from ordering a sonogram for tennis elbow but that shouldn’t stop you from requesting one if…
You really want to know how bad your injury is.
Sadly most Doctors are overbooked and can only spend a limited amount of time diagnosing your problem.
That is why your Doctor will most likely only perform 2 basic tests to see if your condition is tennis elbow.
The first test usually performed is a muscle resistance tennis elbow test.
Check out my video right here, which shows 4 of these tests.
You will lay your affected arm on a table or armrest with your hand dangling over the edge of the armrest or table.
Your Doctor will lay his hand of the top part of your hand as your try to press upward and extend your wrist.
If you have pain, then that would be a positive result.
The second test involves the Doctor simply pressing on the outside of your affected arm(elbow), right at the attachment point where your elbow tendons attach to your arm bones.
But here’s the thing …
While these tests are effective, they don’t tell the true story of what is REALLY going on inside your elbow and why you are in so much pain.
A sonogram can quickly tell you how severe the tears are in your soft tissues.
Check out this interesting article with video on the ultrasound/sonogram machine for tennis elbow works.
That being said…
We all have different pain tolerance levels.
One tennis elbow sufferer could have a small tear and be in extreme pain while another could have a large tear and have minimal discomfort or pain.
But that’s only part of the story …
Then there is the thought of surgery.
This is the absolute last resort but if you must…
Check out my post right here, there are 3 factors to consider.
There are two different stages of tennis elbow.
Acute and chronic.
Acute is usually over the first two to three weeks of your injury.
Beyond that, you are move into the chronic phase of your condition.
If you are in the majority, you’ve probably been in the chronic phase for some time.
Even the smallest, dull aching pain at your elbow is where your condition began.
For the simple reason …
Tennis elbow rarely happens overnight or is caused by one day of overusing your arm.
Traditional forms of treatment such as ice, pain medication, elbow straps or even cortisone shots don’t work for everyone.
So in the end, don’t you think you have nothing to lose by getting a sonogram done?
What about the cost?
Or even the amount of time it will take out of your busy day?
Then what about follow up visits?
Yes these are all questions to consider and contemplate.
Here is something else to consider …
Unless you live in a huge city, the wait times for access to these MRI machines can be lengthy.
It is not uncommon to wait six months to a year to have your evaluation done.
Once you do get your MRI done, if the tear is large enough, you may be looking at surgery to repair it.
But we’ll get to that later…
So what exactly is a Sonogram?
It’s a machine that produces sound waves that innocuously infiltrate your body, bounce off your bones and ligaments and send back as a picture of what is happening inside that particular body part.
Somewhat similar to an X-ray, with the exception of it uses sound waves rather than gamma beams and it’s not a static picture.
It’s more like a real time video capture.
While this type of test is more commonly seen in the format of an Ultrasound on pregnant mothers, it is becoming more popular with soft tissue injuries such as tennis elbow.
Is the actual procedure painful or discomforting?
Are there any side effects you should worry about?
A radiologist usually performs the test.
He/She will pour some cold gel on your elbow region.
Then they will use a hand help device which contains a camera to scan your entire elbow.
What the Radiologist is really seeking out with this test is whether or not there is any ligament degeneration or obvious soft tissue trauma.
He or she will simply examine all structures of your elbow with this machine.
It will remove any bias of whether or not you have an injury.
The problem with going to your GP for a diagnosis is that they are not tennis elbow experts.
Your GP could tell you that you don’t have tennis elbow and then you could literally walk next door to another clinic and another Doctor would tell you otherwise.
So what should you do?
If money is no option, then go and have the sonogram done.
If money is tight and you are on a budget …
I have some GREAT NEWS for you!
Despite what you may think or have heard …
Overcoming tennis elbow does not have to break the bank OR …
Take hours out of your busy day for treatment and care.
Exactly the opposite.
Here’s what you NEED to do!
Make the commitment of performing some simple steps every other day …
Using items already found in your basement, kitchen or garage(You’ll need a hammer, can of soup, broomstick – I’m sure you have them around…right? ).
Sit back on your couch after a hard day of work, flick on your favourite TV show and start healing your tennis elbow and wipe out your elbow pain – for good!
It doesn’t get much easier than that – wouldn’t you agree.
And to prove it, I’ve put together a short instructional video to help get your started.
Click on the button below to see what I am talking about.