Congenital Radioulnar Synostosis

J Am Acad Orthop Surg. 2021 Jul 1;29(13):563-570. doi: 10.5435/JAAOS-D-20-01133.


Congenital radioulnar synostosis is a rare condition resulting in fusion of the proximal portions of the radius and ulna. Patients commonly present in early childhood with functional deficits because of limited forearm rotation and fixed positioning of the forearm. Compensatory motion and hypermobility are frequently observed at the wrist and shoulder, which may predispose these joints to overuse injury. Plain radiographs are used for diagnosis and classification. The most commonly used classification does not aid in treatment decisions. Limited high-level evidence exists to guide management because the literature primarily consists of case reports and case series. Nonsurgical management is often used, yet surgical management is most commonly reported in the literature. Resection of the synostosis has been shown to have high-complication rates and lead to subpar outcomes. Currently, surgical management most commonly involves one or more derotational osteotomies.

MeSH terms

  • Child, Preschool
  • Forearm
  • Humans
  • Radius / abnormalities
  • Radius / diagnostic imaging
  • Radius / surgery
  • Synostosis* / diagnostic imaging
  • Synostosis* / surgery
  • Ulna / abnormalities
  • Ulna / diagnostic imaging

Supplementary concepts

  • Radioulnar Synostosis