Lateral collateral ligament complex of the elbow

Last revised by Dr Yuranga Weerakkody on 17 Sep 2021

The lateral collateral ligament complex or radial collateral ligament complex is a major lateral stabilizer of the elbow joint and resists varus stress.

The LCL is a Y-shaped ligamentous complex composed of three parts 1,2:

  1. annular ligament
    • from sigmoid notch to supinator crest of the ulna bone
    • forms a sling around the radial head
  2. radial collateral ligament
  3. lateral ulnar collateral ligament
    • lateral epicondyle to supinator crest of the ulna
  • accessory lateral collateral ligament 1
    • may be present in up to 33% of patients
    • runs from annular ligament to supinator crest
    • acts to reinforce the annular ligament
  • absence of lateral ulnar collateral ligament 1

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Cases and figures

  • Figure 1: lateral elbow ligaments (Gray's illustration)
    Drag here to reorder.
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