, Volume 10, Issue 3, pp 555–558 | Cite as

Ulnar nerve transection during Tommy John surgery: novel findings and approach to treatment

  • Benjamin Z. PhillipsEmail author
  • Christopher Stockburger
  • Susan E. Mackinnon


While iatrogenic injuries to peripheral nerves in sports-related surgeries are rare, the morbidity of a peripheral nerve injury can be substantial, particularly in the young, active patient population [8]. Medial ulnar collateral ligament (UCL) reconstruction with tendon graft (Tommy John surgery) is a safe and effective operative intervention in treating medial elbow instability in overhead throwing athletes [6, 9] and complications are rare. Ulnar nerve neurapraxia is the most commonly recognized nerve complication [4]. However, median nerve transection during tendon graft harvest has been reported [5, 7, 10, 11, 13]. We report the first documented case of a complete ulnar nerve transection following UCL reconstruction and present a novel surgical intervention to address this serious complication.

Case Report

A 19-year-old right hand-dominant male with medial UCL instability underwent UCL reconstruction. In the course of the surgical procedure, the ulnar nerve was...


Ulnar Nerve Tendon Graft Ulnar Collateral Ligament Nerve Transfer Anterior Interosseous Nerve 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


Conflict of Interest

Benjamin Z. Phillips declares that he has no conflict of interest.

Christopher Stockburger declares that he has no conflict of interest.

Susan E. Mackinnon declares that she has no conflict of interest.

Statement of Human and Animal Rights

No human subjects or animals were involved in this study.

Statement of Informed Consent

No informed consent was obtained for this retrospective review.

Supplementary material

Video 1

(WMV 42154 kb)


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Copyright information

© American Association for Hand Surgery 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Benjamin Z. Phillips
    • 1
    Email author
  • Christopher Stockburger
    • 2
  • Susan E. Mackinnon
    • 1
  1. 1.Division of Plastic and Reconstructive SurgeryWashington University School of MedicineSt. LouisUSA
  2. 2.Department of Orthopedic SurgeryWashington University School of MedicineSt. LouisUSA

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