"The results came back good," manager Fredi Gonzalez said. "He's going to miss a start, and we are going to re-evaluate afterward."
Maholm's elbow began to bother him during a start Sept. 2, Gonzalez said. Maholm went five innings and beat the New York Mets in that game, then pitched six innings Sunday and received no decision in a loss to the Philadelphia Phillies.
When the soreness continued, the Braves decided Maholm should be further evaluated. He flew home to Atlanta for the exam.
Maholm is 10-10 with a 4.35 ERA in 24 starts for the NL East leaders.
Right-hander David Hale will make his major league debut when he takes Maholm's turn in the rotation Friday at home against San Diego.
In an unrelated move, rookie left-hander Alex Wood will be given a breather, and right-hander Freddy Garcia will start in his place Thursday in the series finale at Miami. Wood is 3-3 with a 3.45 ERA in 25 games this year.
The Braves enjoy a big lead in the division, and Gonzalez wants his pitching staff fresh for the playoffs. He had right-hander Julio Teheran skip a turn in the rotation last week.