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Arthroscopic surgical treatment of medial epicondylitis.

BACKGROUND: The study purpose was to evaluate the outcomes of patients who received arthroscopic surgical treatment for medial epicondylitis refractory to conservative treatment.

METHODS: This was a retrospective study of 7 patients who underwent arthroscopic surgical débridement of the common flexor tendon for treatment of medial epicondylitis refractory to conservative treatment. The patients were assessed using the Disabilities of the Arm, Shoulder and Hand score; visual analog scale for pain; and Short Form 36 Health Survey. The mean age at the time of surgery was 50 years (range, 36-67 years). The mean duration of symptoms before surgery was approximately 2 years (range, 8 months to 4 years). The mean follow-up duration was 17 months (range, 6-48 months).

RESULTS: The average postoperative scores were 17 points on the Disabilities of the Arm, Shoulder and Hand outcome measure; 2 points on the visual analog scale at rest for 6 subjects (86%) with slight pain and 1 (14%) with moderate pain; and 78 on the Short Form 36 Health Survey. No significant complications were observed when the procedure was performed via arthroscopy.

CONCLUSION: Arthroscopic surgical treatment for medial epicondylitis of the elbow exhibits good outcomes and is safe and effective.

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