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Journal of the Korean Society for Surgery of the Hand 2011;16(2):72-77.
Comparison of Wrist Extension Stretching Exercise and a Wait-and-see Policy for Treatment of Lateral Epicondylitis
Hyuk Jin Lee, Moon Sang Chung, Sae Hoon Kim, Jihyeung Kim, Goo Hyun Baek
1Department of Orthopedic Surgery, Seoul National University Hospital, Seoul, Korea.
2Department of Orthopedic Surgery, S Seoul Hospital, Suwon, Korea. moonsang@snu.ac.kr
The aim of this study was to evaluate the effects of the wrist stretching exercise on the results of treatment for lateral epicondylitis by comparing with wait-and-see policy. MATERIALS AND METHODS: The patients who had lateral elbow pain associated with a lateral epicondyltitis were divided into wrist extension stretching exercise group (group 1) and wait-and-see policy group (group 2). Group 1 pateitns were educated to perform the wrist stretching exercise; maintenance of the position with the elbow extended, the forearm pronated, and the wrist flexed for more than 1 minute, more than 50 times per day. Group 2 patients were educated that they reduced the activities that provoked pain. The end point of follow-up was when symptoms were disappeared completely.

Two hundred twenty seven patients were enrolled into this study. One hundred forty eight patients were allocated to group 1, 79 patients to group 2. The mean duration of follow-up of group 1 was 10.2 weeks and group 2 was 22.6 weeks. The median survival time from symptom onset to the time of resolution was 8.0 weeks in group 1, 16.0 weeks in group 2.

This study suggests that wrist stretching exercise may be more effective than the wait-and-see policy in the patients with a lateral epicondylitis. The wrist stretching exercise can be recommended as the treatment of lateral epicondylitis.
Key Words: Lateral epicondylitis, Stretching exercise, Wait-and-see

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