A study of functional outcomes following implantation of a total distal radioulnar joint prosthesis

J Hand Surg Eur Vol. 2008 Feb;33(1):18-28. doi: 10.1177/1753193408087118.


This paper reports a long-term follow-up measuring pain, range of motion and weight-bearing ability, following implantation of a total distal radioulnar joint prosthesis. This prosthesis differs from excision arthroplasties and ulnar head replacements by replacing all three components of the distal radioulnar joint, viz. the sigmoid notch, the ulnar head and the triangular fibrocartilage. The design allows longitudinal migration of the radius throughout pronation and supination, as well as load bearing of the wrist. Thirty-one patients receiving the prosthesis returned or were interviewed by telephone at a mean of 5.9 (range 4-9) years. Pronation increased from a mean of 65.5 degrees (range 5-90 degrees ) to 74 degrees (range 20-90 degrees ) and supination from 53 degrees (range 5-90 degrees ) to 70 degrees (range 20-90 degrees ) while greatly diminishing and/or eliminating pain. Grip increased from a mean of 10 kg (22 lbs) to 24 kg (52 lbs). Weight bearing was restored or increased in 29 of 31 patients.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Arthroplasty, Replacement*
  • Elbow Joint* / physiopathology
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Hand Strength
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Pain, Postoperative / epidemiology
  • Pronation
  • Prosthesis Design
  • Recovery of Function
  • Weight-Bearing