We treated post-traumatic contracture of the elbow in 13 consecutive patients (14 elbows) by operative release. Through a single medial approach, the posterior oblique bundle of the medial collateral ligament was resected, followed by posterior and anterior capsulectomies. An additional lateral release through a separate incision was required in only four elbows. The results were assessed at a mean interval of 57 months after operation. Before surgery active extension lacked 43 degrees which improved to 17 degrees after operation. Active flexion before operation was 89 degrees, which improved to 127 degrees. The mean arc of movement increased from 46 degrees to 110 degrees. All 14 elbows showed scarring of the posterior oblique bundle of the medial collateral ligament. Neither the interval from injury to operative release nor the age of the patient affected the results. A medial approach is useful to reveal and excise the pathological changes in the medial collateral ligament. It is a safe and effective route through which to correct post-traumatic contracture of the elbow.

Polls results

On a scale of 1 to 10, rate how much this article will change your clinical practice?

NO change
BIG change
90% Article relates to my practice (10/11)
9% Article does not relate to my practice (1/11)
0% Undecided (0/11)

Will this article lead to more cost-effective healthcare?

81% Yes (9/11)
18% No (2/11)
0% Undecided (0/11)

Was this article biased? (commercial or personal)

0% Yes (0/11)
100% No (11/11)
0% Undecided (0/11)

What level of evidence do you think this article is?

9% Level 1 (1/11)
9% Level 2 (1/11)
45% Level 3 (5/11)
36% Level 4 (4/11)
0% Level 5 (0/11)