The most common UCL injury is a UCL tear that is usually gradual but may also happen in a single traumatic event. Pain on the inner side of the elbow is the most common symptom of a UCL injury. A UCL tear may sometimes feel like a “pop” after throwing followed by intense pain.
Although little data exists on the non-operative intervention of UCL injuries in tennis players, conservative management is certainly reasonable in the recreational player. Surgical intervention should be reserved for those players who fail conservative care or the elite level athlete and involves reconstruction of the torn ligament.
More Ucl Injury Tennis images
A UCL injury is an injury most commonly experienced by pitchers, but it can be seen in many throwing and overhead athletes. Learn more about it.
The stress of repeated throwing on the elbow causes microscopic tissue tears and inflammation. With continued repetition, eventually, the UCL can tear preventing the athlete from throwing with significant speed. UCL injury may also be caused by direct trauma such as with a fall, car accident, or work injury.
Adult pitchers do not experience the same injury because the growth plates in the bones have closed. Adults more commonly have injuries to the ulnar collateral ligament (UCL) and may require surgery which was made famous by major league pitcher Tommy John.
Post-Injury days 0 - 7 Goals 1. Increase ROM 2. Promote healing of ulnar collateral ligament 3. Retard muscular atrophy 4. Decrease pain and inflammation 5. 1 week post-injury initiate cardiovascular conditioning program with modifications for injury per the ClevelandIndians Physical Development Program (start at Week 1 in manual) Activities 1.
With UCL injuries, the athlete uses the same throwing or overhead motion over and over again, sometimes for years. Microtears develop, the ligament gradually stretches, frays, and degenerates. Eventually, it reaches its limit and the injury becomes impossible to ignore.
Players with more severe UCL injuries typically require Tommy John Surgery. The surgical procedure involves implanting a new tendon into drill holes made in the bones of the elbow. The tendon is weaved through the drill holes and then pulled tight and sewn together.
Gymnasts, cheerleaders, soccer players and wrestlers have been known to suffer acute trauma to the UCL during a fall from a significant height, while baseball, softball, football, tennis and other overhead or throwing athletes are more likely to sustain their injuries from repetitive stress over the years.