If someone has a completely torn ligament in their elbow, do they have to have surgery or can it heal on its own?
he ligament in the elbow, the ulnar ligament is usually torn because of sudden and forceful stress on the elbow, like what baseball pitchers and tennis players do. The repeated stress weakens the ligament until it tears.
Partial tears are usually treated with rest, ice, and anti-inflammatories, but complete tears usually do well with surgery. However, if the person who has injured the tendon doesn't want to go back to the sport or activity that caused the injury, it is possible for the doctor to first try healing the injury with nonsurgical treatment.
Carter Mitchell, E. Lyle Cain, and James R. Andrews. Ulnar collateral ligament injuries of the elbow. In Current Orthopaedic Practice . November 2008. Vol. 19. No. 6. Pp. 596-601.