Results of the Modified Sauvé-Kapandji Procedure in the Treatment of Chronic Posttraumatic Derangement of the Distal Radioulnar Joint*

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We reviewed the results of a modified Sauvé-Kapandji procedure with tenodesis of the flexor carpi ulnaris to the carpus in eighteen patients who had chronic derangement of the distal radioulnar joint. There were fourteen men and four women. The mean supination of the forearm had improved from 16 degrees (range, 0 to 75 degrees) preoperatively to 76 degrees (range, 40 to 90 degrees) at the time of the latest follow-up, and the mean pronation had improved from 42 degrees (range, 0 to 80 degrees) preoperatively to 81 degrees (range, 60 to 90 degrees) at the time of follow-up. Pain relief was satisfactory, and the mean grip strength had improved from 36 percent of that on the unaffected side preoperatively to 73 percent at the time of follow-up. One patient had moderate pain over the ulnar stump associated with residual volar instability of the proximal ulnar segment, and he had a tenodesis of the extensor carpi ulnaris as a second procedure. Another patient had mild instability of the stump only after he had a second operation, which was an excision of a bone mass (ossification) in the resected area. The ulnar stump was stable in sixteen patients.Eight of the eleven patients who had performed heavy manual labor before the injury were able to return to work full-time without restrictions. According to a modification of the wrist-scoring system of the Mayo Clinic, at a mean of four years and two months (range, two years to eight years and four months), six patients had an excellent result; seven, a good result; four, a fair result; and one, a poor result. On the basis of our findings, we believe that the index operation is an excellent salvage procedure for the treatment of chronic posttraumatic derangement of the distal radioulnar joint, especially when nonoperative treatment has been unsuccessful and rotation of the forearm is severely limited.

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