Golfer’s Elbow Pain Case Study

Patient: A 45-year-old male presented with pain in his left elbow. He reported that the pain had started a few months ago and had worsened over time. The pain was especially severe when he performed activities that involved gripping or twisting, such as playing golf or carrying heavy objects. The pain was keeping him from being able to play a full round of golf and from doing some daily tasks. He had tried over-the-counter pain medications, physical therapy, and corticosteroid injections, but had not experienced significant relief.

Assessment: Upon examination, the acupuncturist observed that the patient had tenderness and swelling around the medial epicondyle of his left elbow. The doctors that had diagnosed the patient with golfer’s elbow, which is an overuse injury caused by repetitive motions of the wrist and arm. The acupuncturist agreed with this conclusion.  

Treatment: The acupuncturist developed a treatment plan that involved inserting needles into specific points on the patient’s left arm and hand as well as throughout the body on the arms and legs. The needles were left in place for approximately 20 minutes during each session. As part of the at home care the patient was instructed to use the PEMF machine, Patrick, at home five times a week running the program designed for golfer’s elbow. In addition the acupuncturist also recommended that the patient rest his elbow and avoid activities that aggravated the pain for a few weeks.

Results: After ten acupuncture sessions, the patient reported significant improvement in his elbow pain. He was able to play golf and perform other activities with only minimal pain. The patient continued to receive acupuncture treatments on a twice weekly basis for a total of 20 sessions, and his symptoms continued to improve. At the end of the treatment course, the patient reported that he was pain-free and had regained full range of motion in his left elbow. He no longer experienced pain when gripping or twisting objects and could play a full round of golf without any pain.

Conclusion: This case study suggests that acupuncture can be an effective treatment for golfer’s elbow and other types of elbow pain caused by overuse injuries. By targeting specific points on the body, acupuncture can help to reduce inflammation and promote healing of soft tissue injuries. It’s important to note that each patient’s experience with acupuncture may be different, and it’s important to work with a qualified acupuncturist to develop an individualized treatment plan that addresses the specific needs of each patient.