Tennis elbow release

Surgery for humeral epicondylitis

A surgical procedure to remove or repair damaged tissue and relieve the pain of tennis elbow

What is tennis elbow?

Tennis elbow is a common injury caused by the overuse of muscles and tendons in your forearm. It affects around 5% of adults, and despite it's name, the condition isn't necessarily caused by racket sports.

If non-surgical methods such as physiotherapy don't improve severe or long-term pain associated with tennis elbow, your consultant may recommend surgery.

Need to know

  • What happens during a tennis elbow release? icon plus

    The procedure is done under general anesthetic. Your surgeon will make a small cut on the outside of your elbow. They will then expose the bone spur and excise it. The tendon is then repaired. Some surgeons may prefer to do this procedure arthroscopically (keyhole). They make a few small cuts on your elbow and insert a tiny surgical camera (arthroscope), allowing them to see inside your elbow joint and guide them during the operation. They will use instruments alongside the arthroscope to remove any bone spurs and cut or repair damaged muscles and tendons. They close the cuts with stitches. The procedure will take 45 - 60 minutes in theatre.
  • How to prepare for your procedure icon plus

    Your consultant will explain the procedure to you and answer any questions you may have. You may be asked to have an MRI scan to help pinpoint and understand the extent of the damage to your elbow. Because you will be having general anaesthetic, your consultant will let you know how long you need to avoid eating and drinking before your procedure.

    Like all procedures, there may be some risks and side effects involved. Your consultant will explain these to you.
  • After your surgery icon plus

    You should be able to return home the same day as your surgery. You may need to wear a sling for a few days while your elbow heals. Your consultant will let you know what to expect, and you may be given a number of physiotherapy exercises to help you regain strength and flexibility. It will take several weeks to make a full recovery. Your consultant will let you know when you can get back to your usual routine, including work or exercise.

Our shoulder and elbow consultants

We're proud to work with leading orthopaedic consultants, who specialise in joint problems of the shoulder and elbow, from trauma or a sports related injury. 

Our locations

From complex shoulder and elbow surgery to diagnostic tests and procedures, we provide exceptional orthopaedic care across our network of hospitals, outpatient centres and specialist clinics.

Request a shoulder or elbow appointment

We're happy to help you make an appointment with one of our experienced upper limb consultants. We can also make imaging and outpatient physiotherapy appointments for you.

Call us today

020 7079 4344
This content is intended for general information only and does not replace the need for personal advice from a qualified health professional.
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