Chiropractor Chandler AZ

Acupuncture and Elbow Pain

forearm muscles anterior flexors labeled

Tennis elbow is also known as lateral epicondylitis. Tennis elbow usually affects the outside of the elbow with pain radiating down the outside of the forearm and into the wrists. The pain with tennis elbow starts slowly until the person cannot avoid the pain. Tennis elbow could affect all athletes not only tennis players. This is caused by sudden or slow injury of the muscle and tendon around the outer area of the elbow. Tennis elbow tendonitis specifically involves the area of the forearm called the lateral epicondyle where muscles are attached to the elbow. It commonly affects the dominant arm. Symptoms include pain around the outside elbow. The pain gets worse when turning, squeezing, and shaking hands. It affects men more than women and people who pursue activities with repetitive arm movements.

Golfer’s Elbow is also called medial epicondylitis. Golfer’s elbow usually affects the inside of the elbow with pain radiating down the inside of the forearm and into the wrist. The symptoms include pain, stiffness, numbness and tingling that can radiate into the hand.

Lateral epicondylitis and medial epicondylitis both produce dull and sharp pain around the elbow that can radiate toward the hand when using the elbow muscles. The can often occur together in people who use their hands throughout the day for work or exercises. More information can be found here on the differences between tennis elbow and golfer’s elbow.

Carpal tunnel and cubital tunnel are also common causes of elbow pain. Carpal tunnel is commonly recognized as a median nerve entrapment that causes pain, numbness, and weakness into the thumb, index, and middle finger. The median nerve can becomes entrapped or “pinched” under the pronator teres muscles near the elbow.

bicep muscle insertion labeled

Cubital tunnel syndrome is a compression of the ulnar nerve as it travels behind the elbow in the cubital tunnel. The ulnar nerve is vulnerable to compression behind the elbow from chronic tendonitis or bumping your elbow. Many of us have felt the sensation of hitting your “funny bone” or ulnar nerve. Cubital tunnel syndrome treatment also responds well to conservative treatment and acupuncture.

How Does Acupuncture Help Elbow Pain?

Acupuncture is thought to release neurochemicals to stimulate the nervous system. The resulting changes influence homeostasis, which is our body’s ability to stabilize itself. Stimulation of acupuncture points has been shown to decrease pain sensitivity and increase relaxation.

Acupuncture can relieve tennis elbow, golfer’s elbow, carpal tunnel, and cubital tunnel symptoms by stimulating the release of endorphins and serotonin which changes the processing of pain in the brain. It improves muscle stiffness and joint mobility by improving circulation.

acupuncture wrist chandler

Treatments for both golfer’s elbow and tennis elbow include corticosteroid injections, NSAIDs, and surgery. While these treatments may decrease pain and inflammation temporarily, there are side effects with each. Many primary care or specialists prefer a trial treatment of conservative therapy before utilizing more aggressive treatments.

Some noninvasive treatments for elbow injuries include Massage, Graston Technique, Chiropractic, and Physical Therapy. We provide treatment for many patients who have tried one of these treatments combined with home therapies including rest, ice, stretching, light exercise, and specific elbow braces. Elbow acupuncture treatments enhance conservative therapy and home treatments to speed healing and reduce pain.

The video below describes how acupuncture is performed and commonly asked questions. Many people seek acupuncture for their forearm muscle and elbow joint pain, it is also very effective when combined with conservative therapy and medical treatments.

Learn more about Acupuncture in our Chandler AZ Clinic. Chiropractic, physical therapy, massage therapy, and acupuncture can be used alone or combined to enhance many types of treatments and injuries. Many people with chronic pain find significant relief when combining these treatments.

Alpha Chiropractic and Physical Therapy provides treatment for many patients in Chandler, Gilbert, Mesa, Tempe, Phoenix, and Maricopa. Most patients have never seen a clinic that combines treatments from different providers into improving your pain. Chiropractic Adjustments are enhanced with physical therapy exercises and stretches on the elbow, wrist, shoulder, and neck. Many people with elbow and arm injuries develop pain after compensating for joint pain in their neck, back, shoulder, and wrist.


Many patients are amazed how their muscle pain and “knots in their forearm muscles” are quickly improved with Graston Technique treatments combined with massage. Graston Technique helps break up scar tissue and enhance tendinopathy healing. Massage therapy helps decrease muscle spasms in the shoulder, arm, elbow, and wrist muscles, which often contribute to developing carpal tunnel, cubital tunnel, medial epicondylitis, and lateral epicondylitis.

Therapy and treatments for many types of conditions can be improved with a combination of acupuncture, chiropractic, physical therapy. Learn more about our unique Chandler Chiropractic Clinic.