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Am J Phys Med Rehabil. 2010 Aug;89(8):668-71. doi: 10.1097/PHM.0b013e3181c567af.

Posterior interosseous nerve palsy as a complication of friction massage in tennis elbow.

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Department of Neurology, Shin-Kong WHS Memorial Hospital, Taipei Medical University, Taiwan.


Friction massage is a commonly used physical therapy that is usually safe and without complication. We report an unusual case of posterior interosseous nerve palsy that arose after friction massage. Electrophysiologic findings confirmed a focal neuropathy 4-6 cm distal to the lateral epicondyle. The neurologic symptoms resolved completely 2 mos after discontinuation of friction massage. This case experience broadens the spectrum of etiologies of posterior interosseous nerve palsy. Nerve conduction studies may be a useful adjunct to a thorough physical examination to confirm the diagnosis and is important to prognostic evaluation, if unexplained neurologic symptoms develop after certain physical therapy procedures. Further treatment includes avoiding compression and observation.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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