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Recovery from tennis elbow surgery can be an uncomfortable and sometimes long process.
Discomfort in the elbow and lower arm might be something that you've become accustomed to if tennis elbow surgery is even a possibility, but what measures can be taken to make sure that your elbow has the best chance of fully-healing after surgery?
What Is Tennis Elbow?
Lateral epicondylitis, more commonly known as tennis elbow, is the term used to describe pain and tenderness in the outer region of the elbow.
Despite its name, tennis elbow isn’t something exclusive to those who often have a racket in hand. Most often, tennis elbow arises from the excessive use of forearm muscles and tendons, leading to the development of minor tears and inflammation.
Tennis elbow can be a minor injury that only needs some rest and ice, but it can also be more serious. Injections and even surgery can be needed to help repair the damage. In these cases damaged tissue is removed to help alleviate some of the pain and discomfort.
What To Expect From Tennis Elbow Surgery
Recovery from tennis elbow surgery can be a journey that requires patience and perseverance.
Immediately after surgery, it’s likely that you will experience limited mobility. During this time you may need to rely on loved ones for some assistance with everyday tasks, and you might have to even make some alterations to regain independence.
Tennis Elbow Surgery Recovery Time
The actual recovery time from a tennis elbow surgery can be very different for each person.
You should always speak to a medical professional about expected recovery time. They can discuss expectations and offer advice on physical therapy exercises that may aid recovery.
Adaptive Tools For Tennis Elbow Surgery Recovery
From the first few post-surgery days to the gradual return to regular activities, learning to manage without complete use of your hand and arm can be a challenge. Luckily there are a few things you can do to adapt.
Adaptive Clothing For Tennis Elbow Surgery Recovery
Before you even think about long-term recovery from tennis elbow surgery, you’ll need to prepare for having the surgery and understand what that means in the first couple of days or weeks.
It’s incredibly common for those who have had arm, shoulder or hand surgeries to lose the use of that arm during initial recovery. This is where adaptive clothes for post-surgery become invaluable.
What is adaptive clothing? Adaptive clothes are specially designed to incorporate features for those with physical disabilities or limited mobility. These clothing items often include modifications such as Velcro closures, front fastenings, and easy-access designs to enhance comfort and independence for those facing challenges when getting dressed.
There are many clothing options that help with dressing and feeling comfortable post-surgery. Spaghetti string or open arm shirts can make dressing more simple, as can alternatives like fasten-free or magnetic fasten dresses and loose-fitting overalls. In general, any clothing that requires minimal use of arms or hands is a good option for recovery.
Our top recommendation for adaptive clothing is always an adaptive bra.
Many who undergo surgery underestimate just how hard daily dressing (and undressing) can be, particularly when relying on those items of clothes that have awkward fastens or small clasps that require two hands.
An adaptive bra offers vital independence and can be securely fastened with one hand without any additional strain. Our recommendation is to choose a specially designed Velcro front-fastening bra to avoid excessive use of the operated arm.
The Springrose adaptive bra is comfortable, practical, and looks great. It’s incredibly difficult to return to back-fastening bras when you learn just how great these front-fastening alternatives are.
Strengthening and Rehabilitation For Tennis Elbow
Much of the recovery for tennis elbow surgery is about regaining strength and movement in your arm.
The trick with recovery is patience with physical therapy and not overworking the elbow too soon.
There are a number of tools that can help to strengthen the elbow once you are signed off by a medical professional. Flex, or twist bars are one popular option. They gently work the problem joints and can be purchased for different resistance levels. Similarly, smaller resistance bands can help with practicing those more intricate movements that cause tennis elbow.
Combine adaptive options with plenty of rest time to properly heal and you should be on the right path.