Tennis elbow Tennis elbow (lateral epicondylitis) is a condition caused by a strain to muscles and tendons in the forearm. It's called tennis elbow as a lot of tennis players suffer from this condition, although anyone can be affected by it. The tendons become inflamed where they join the bony part on the outside of the elbow joint, causing elbow pain and weakness in grip and hand strength. Acupuncture for tennis elbow Generally, anti-inflammatory medication and steroid injections are used together with ice packs to reduce the inflammation. Physical therapy can often make it worse. Acupuncture is very effective at treating tennis elbow and reducing the inflammation and relieving pain. Specific acupuncture points are used to reduce inflammation and pain in the forearm muscle and increase blood flow, thereby accelerating the rate of healing. Traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) which includes traditional acupuncture, has been shown in research studies to reduce long term pain of tennis elbow as well as pain and inflammation.