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Transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation as adjunct to primary care management for tennis elbow: pragmatic randomised controlled trial (TATE trial)
  1. Linda S Chesterton1,
  2. A Martyn Lewis1,
  3. Julius Sim1,2,
  4. Christian D Mallen1,
  5. Elizabeth E Mason1,
  6. Elaine M Hay1,
  7. Daniëlle A van der Windt1
  1. 1Arthritis Research UK Primary Care Centre, Keele University, Keele, Staffordshire, ST5 5BG, UK
  2. 2School of Health and Rehabilitation, Keele University, UK
  1. Correspondence to : L S Chesterton; l.s.chesterton{at}


STUDY QUESTION Can transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (TENS), as a patient controlled adjunct to primary care management for tennis elbow, provide superior pain relief to primary care management alone.

SUMMARY ANSWER TENS conferred no additional clinical benefit over primary care management consisting of information and advice on analgesia and exercise for patients with tennis elbow, probably partly owing to poor adherence to treatment recommendations.

WHAT IS KNOWN AND WHAT THIS PAPER ADDS A need exists for safe, self administered interventions to provide pain relief for patients with tennis elbow. TENS as an adjunct to primary care management failed to show any additional pain relief compared with primary care management alone.

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