Ulnar Collateral Ligament Injury

Also known as: UCL injury, ulnar collateral ligament tear, UCL tear, Tommy John injuries.

What is an ulnar collateral ligament injury?

The ulnar collateral ligament is the tissue that crosses the elbow, connecting the upper arm to the forearm. When this band of tissue gets sprained or torn, it’s known as an ulnar collateral ligament injury.

What causes ulnar collateral ligament injury? 

Most of the injuries to the ulnar collateral ligament occur due to repetitive motions, often in athletic endeavors such as pitching or serving a volleyball. A direct blow to the arm or another type of injury can also cause the problems.

What are the symptoms of ulnar collateral ligament injury?

Pain, especially when using the arm, soreness, swelling, difficulty moving the arm, numbness and tingling are possible symptoms of an ulnar collateral ligament injury.

What are ulnar collateral ligament injury care options? 

Minor ulnar collateral ligament injuries can be treated with rest and physical therapy. In more severe instances, surgery is required to repair the ulnar collateral ligament injury.

Reviewed by: Annie L Casta, MD

This page was last updated on: September 24, 2021 04:15 PM

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