Research from a pilot study presented at the annual meeting of the American Academy of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation in San Francisco* suggests that acupuncture not only relieves the symptoms of tennis elbow, it appears to resolve the condition completely.
In the study, Dr. Peter Dorsher, a medical doctor certified in acupuncture, performed acupuncture on 22 patients with varying degrees of tennis elbow.
Each patient was treated between 2-10 times. After an average of 3.9 treatments, a "maximal response" was achieved, with every patient reporting a disappearance of their symptoms. This response also appeared to last much longer than that usually seen in patients using painkillers, braces or other traditional methods. At a mean followup time of 8.5 months after receiving acupuncture, 17 patients (77.3%) experienced a resolution of their symptoms and had returned to full, normal activities; another two patients had returned to normal activities except those that involved heavy lifting in the affected arm.
*Dorsher PT. Treatment of chronic lateral epicondylitis with acupuncture: a pilot study. Presented at the annual meeting of the American Academy of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, San Francisco, CA, November 4, 2000