Trends and Epidemiology of Tennis-Related Sprains/Strains in the United States, 2010 to 2016

Jonathan D. Chevinsky, Jared M. Newman, Neil V. Shah, Neel Pancholi, John Holliman, Nipun Sodhi, Ahmed Eldib, Qais Naziri, Bashir A. Zikria, John P. Reilly, Scott E. Barbash, William P. Urban

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


BACKGROUND: While tennis is one of the most popular sports in the world, it predisposes those who play it to a number of injuries. Several studies have shown sprains/strains to be the most common tennis-related injury. However, data is limited regarding trends in tennis-related sprains/strains. Therefore, this study evaluated: 1) trends in tennis-related sprains/strains; 2) trends in tennis-related sprains/strains by age; and 3) trends in the most common tennis-related sprained/strained body parts.

MATERIALS AND METHODS: This study utilized the National Electronic Injury Surveillance System (NEISS) database to collect all tennis-related sprains/strains that occurred between January 1, 2010 and December 31, 2016. The annual trends of overall tennis-related sprains/strains were evaluated. Then, the trends in tennis-related sprains/strains by age groups (less than 14 years, 14 to 29 years, 30 to 54 years, and 55 years and older) were compared, and the tennis-related sprains/strains injuries of different body parts were evaluated.

RESULTS: A total of 48,638 tennis-related sprains/strains occurred during the study period. There was a decrease in the annual estimated weights of sprains/strains, from 8,433 in 2010 to 5,326 in 2016 (p=0.094). When stratified by age, tennis-related sprains/strains occurred in 3,295 (6.8%) patients younger than 14 years, 15,169 (31.2%) patients between the ages of 14 and 29 years, 16,814 (34.6%) patients between the ages of 30 and 54 years, and 13,360 (27.5%) in patients 55 years and older. Also, the trends tended to decrease for every age group, but this was not statistically significant. Furthermore, the most common tennis-related sprains/strains involved the ankle (30.2%), knee (13.7%), lower leg (11.3%), wrist (10.3%), lower trunk (8.5%), shoulder (8.1%), foot (4.9%), and elbow (2.5%). There was a significant decrease in the annual trends of ankle sprains/strains over the study's time-period (p=0.003).

CONCLUSION: Sprains/strains were the most common tennis-related injuries, and the trends decreased over time, regardless of age. The lower extremity was more commonly injured than the upper extremity, with the ankle being the most common location. Understanding incidence and trends of tennis-related sprains/strains may help elucidate uncertainty pertaining to tennis injury statistics, ultimately improving the ability-of-care providers to work with players to develop preventive measures and better guide treatment.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)333-338
Number of pages6
JournalSurgical technology international
StatePublished - Dec 22 2017

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery


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