Elbow Ligament Repair

photograph of soccer player taking a throw-in.
diagram showing ulnar collateral ligament
Elbow injuries commonly occur amongst athletes who play sports such as baseball, softball and also those who play tennis, badminton and other racquet sports.

Overusing the elbow may lead to some injuries such as tendonitis or bursitis.
Posterolateral rotatory instability of the elbow can also occur following an overhead throwing action such as that of a pitcher or a cricket player. Lifting weights can also rupture ligaments of the elbow.

The main ligament of the elbow is the lateral ulnar collateral ligament (LUCL). The LUCL ligament may completely rupture following an incident, or the elbow may dislocate resulting in an unstable elbow. Some patients may have a feeling that their elbow clunks during activities such as using the arm to push out of a chair or. Physiotherapy may be beneficial initially however reconstruction of the ligament with a harvested tendon is a more effective treatment option to regain strength and stability.

Elbow ligament repairs are performed at Hollywood Hospital or Glengarry Hospital. Admission will be mid-morning with scheduled surgery later that same day.

Your anaesthetist will visit you on the day of procedure following admission. There is not normally a need to consult with the Anaesthetist prior to the operating day, we do suggest you make contact if you have had any of the following:
  • Head or Heart Surgery
  • Lapband Insitu
  • Blood Thinning Medication
  • Relevant Medical History.
Watch the Video: UCL Reconstruction.

The surgery

The LUCL ligament is reconstructed from a harvested tendon (usually from the forearm). Bone tunnels are created to assist repair with sutures to hold the tendon graft in place. Following elbow ligament repair you will have an incision over your elbow and small incisions over the harvest site. The arm is then dressed in a large bandage with a back slab applied to hold your arm in place.

After surgery

photograph of man wearing an elbow brace.
The back slab will be replaced with a light weight elbow brace following the first post-operative appointment.

An occupational therapist will assist with making a hinged elbow brace. An account will be issued separately from the therapist.

At home

The brace will be worn for 6 weeks with gradual extension of the elbow as instructed. Elbow therapy may be required to regain extension in the elbow.

Please phone Mr Kozak’s rooms on 9381 3084 to schedule a post-operative appointment for 7–10 days following surgery.

If you develop:
  • a temperature of over 38.5°C
  • swelling or discomfort which persists or worsens despite ice and rest and pain medicine
  • excessive bleeding numbness, tingling, redness or swelling

– please contact the office or the hospital.

Surgical Appointments

Hollywood Hospital
Monash Avenue
NEDLANDS
WA 6008

Glengarry Hospital
53 Arnisdale Road
DUNCRAIG
WA 6023

Practice Details

Please Call (08) 9381 3084 for an appointment.
Fax: (08) 9381 3054
or email us

Level 2, 280 Rokeby Road
SUBIACO
WA 6008

Sports Medicine Centre
1/64 Arnisdale Road
DUNCRAIG
WA 6023

Opening Hours
Open Monday to Friday 9am to 5pm

Subiaco rooms

Duncraig rooms

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