Ulnotriquetral Ligament Split Tear in a Collegiate Tennis Player

Faculty Mentor(s)

Dr. Kirk Brumels, Hope College
Profesor Margaret Frens, Hope College
Professor Brian Dykhuizen, Hope College

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An ulnotriquetral (UT) ligament split tear is a unique injury that involves the ulnotriquetral ligament in the wrist. The UT ligament attaches at the ulna and triquetrium bones which are located on the medial aspect of the wrist. UT split tears are a unique injury that has the potential to be very frustrating, painful and difficult to diagnose, and because of this, it is paramount that the proper attention to detail be taken during the initial examination and recognition of the differential diagnosis possibilities. The mechanism for this injury is usually blunt force, whether from a fall or being struck by an object causing the delicate ligament to split. This is in contrast to the presentation of many other ligament tears which are characterized by rupture or avulsion of the ligament from the bone causing clinical joint instability which can be noted by the clinician and assists in the diagnosis of a ligament injury. This case will detail the diagnostic difficulties often associated with these injuries and outline various aspects of UT ligament injury management providing clinicians with tools to assist in recognition of the UT split tear especially when there is pain in this area without joint instability.

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