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What is a Medial Ulnar Collateral Ligament Injury?
A medial ulnar collateral ligament, or MUCL, injury is an overuse injury where a ligament in the elbow is sprained or torn. This condition is often seen in athletes, especially those who play baseball or other sports that may involve repetitive throwing.
What causes a Medial Ulnar Collateral Ligament Injury?
One of the most common causes of MUCL injuries is repetitive motion, especially throwing motions like those in baseball or football.
The MUCL can be found on the inner side of the elbow, between the ulna and the humerus. This ligament connects the humerus, or upper arm bone, to the ulna, one of the forearm bones. Repetitive stress can cause inflammation, tears or sprains in the MUCL. In severe cases, the ligament may rupture.
Symptoms and Diagnosis
Symptoms of this injury vary depending on the condition's severity, but generally include pain on the inner side of the elbow. Swelling and arm weakness may be present, as well as a popping sensation may be felt during elbow movement in some cases.
How is a Medial Ulnar Collateral Ligament Injury treated?
Conservative treatment options may include anti-inflammatory medication, rest, and cold compression. Your doctor may also suggest the use of brace to keep the elbow immobilized and stable. If the ligament is severely torn or ruptured, surgery may be required.