Lateral epicondylitis is a painful condition that impairs the quality of life and the working capacities of many middle-aged people. Conservative treatments offer an opportunity for improvement in the majority of cases. Surgical alternatives can be considered in those patients with persisting pain. Open, arthroscopic and percutaneous extensor tendon procedures offer similar results with 10–20% failure rates. Radiofrequency microtenotomies have been introduced with comparable results to traditional surgical procedures. Although both thermal and pulsed radiofrequency techniques have been applied, there is more experience with the thermal. In the past, thermal radiofrequency has been applied through a 3–5 cm skin incision, but now some researchers have reported its percutaneous application with radiofrequency cannulas. The results are similar to former techniques but with significantly reduced surgical aggressiveness that correlates with less postoperative discomfort and a faster recovery.
Part of the book: Chronic Pain