New elbow surgery technique developed at Mayo Clinic helps wrestler get back on the mat

Tommy John surgery is not just for baseball pitchers. Ask Kylie Donat of Bemidji, Minnesota.

Kylie is an 18-year-old high school swimmer, track and field athlete, and wrestler. She has been wrestling since 2021, the first year that girls’ wrestling was a sanctioned high school sport in Minnesota. By 2023, Kylie was favored to win her weight class at the state championship.

Then came the practice that changed everything.

In January 2023, her wrestling partner threw her down on the mat. Kylie tried to catch herself, but her left elbow bent awkwardly, and she heard popping sounds. A week later, she used the Heimlich technique on a teammate who was choking on her food. The maneuver worked, fortunately, but it made Kylie’s injury – to her medial ulnar collateral ligament – worse. Continue reading at →