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Inflamed Trigger Points in the Forearm

author image Bryan Fass
Bryan Fass began writing in 2003. His column appears on, and he has numerous books on fitness, wellness, injury prevention and human performance, including "The Fit Responder" and "On the Road to Feeling Great." He is a certified/licensed athletic trainer, strength and conditioning specialist, paramedic, speaker and consultant. He holds a Bachelor of Arts in sports medicine from Catawba College.
Inflamed Trigger Points in the Forearm
Woman having her elbow examined by doctor. Photo Credit: KatarzynaBialasiewicz/iStock/Getty Images

Pain experienced in the elbow, wrist or forearm that is non-traumatic in its origin can often be attributed to trigger point inflammation. According to, trigger points "consist of localized tender spots in a tense band of muscle fibers that when subjected to direct pressure, refer pain to other areas along the length of the involved muscle(s)." Golfer's elbow and tennis elbow pain are often the manifestation of trigger point inflammation in the muscles of the forearm.

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Extensor Pain

Trigger points in the muscles of the forearm that extend the wrist can often manifest as tennis elbow. Overuse of these muscles or poor sport technique can cause inflammation of the wrist extensors, which in turn can cause inflammation of the trigger points in the extensor muscles. Since trigger point pain refers to different areas of the arm, people often complain of wrist problems even though the cause of pain originates near the elbow.

Flexor Pain

Golfer's elbow can be caused from overuse and/or poor sport technique. Also known as medial epicondylitis, according to, it is a similar condition to tennis elbow, though it occurs on the inside, rather than the outside, of the elbow. As the trigger points in the elbow become inflamed, pain is often felt elsewhere in the wrist and forearm.


Treating inflamed trigger points in the forearm can help to alleviate pain and restore normal function. The Trigger Point Therapy Workbook website notes that massage can relieve trigger point pain and reduce inflammation in the forearm muscles. Heat applied to the painful area prior to activity will increase blood flow and loosen the muscles. The website also recommends to apply ice packs to the elbow for 15 to 20 minutes, four times a day for several days, immediately after activity. If the pain continues, physical therapy can strengthen the muscles of the forearm and elbow, and use therapeutic modalities such as ultrasound and muscle stimulation to decrease pain and inflammation.

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