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Am J Orthop (Belle Mead NJ). 2006 Jun;35(6):266-9.

Evaluation of the medial elbow in the throwing athlete.

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  • 1Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, North Carolina, USA.


The valgus forces generated by throwing athletes can cause injuries and permanently damage the medial elbow structures. Clinicians must have a clear understanding of the ulnar collateral ligament complex and the associated medial elbow structures at risk in these athletes. Taking a detailed history, conducting a physical examination, and obtaining imaging studies will aid in making the correct diagnosis and giving these injuries the appropriate treatment. Pain around the medial elbow is of concern to throwing athletes, coaches, and medical staff. Valgus forces generated by the throwing motion add considerable stress to the medial elbow structures and thus potentially cause injury. Baseball players, particularly pitchers, are most often affected, but athletes participating in sports such as football, volleyball, water polo, tennis, and javelin throwing can also be affected.

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