Acta Orthopaedica et Traumatologica Turcica

Ligament reconstruction using the FulkersonWatson method to treat chronic isolated distal radioulnar joint instability: shortterm results

AOTT 2011; 45: 168-174
DOI: 10.3944/AOTT.2011.2380
Read: 404 Downloads: 347 Published: 07 February 2020

Objective: Isolated distal radioulnar instability may remain unrecognized during the acute period of trauma as it is difficult to diagnose, and does not become obvious until later when it has become chronic. We present early results in patients who underwent stabilization with extraarticular ligament reconstruction (Fulkerson-Watson reconstruction).\r\nMethods: Four women and 1 man underwent surgery for chronic isolated distal radioulnar joint instability demonstrated in X-rays and magnetic resonance images. Arthroscopy revealed avulsion of the triangular fibrocartilage complex from the point of insertion in 3 patients, and peripheral tears in 2 patients. The peripheral tears were debrided arthroscopically. All patients had an adequate sigmoid notch and therefore underwent ligament reconstruction using the Fulkerson-Watson method. Postoperative evaluations were done with MRI. \r\nResults: Mean follow-up was 15.5 months (range 6–26 months). Stability was achieved in all patients. The mean Quick-DASH symptom score decreased from 18.63 (15.90–22.72) to 6.81 (2.27–9.09) after surgery. A mean visual analogue score to assess pain decreased from 7.32 (6.30–8.40) to 1.88 (1.50–2.30) after surgery. Preoperative and postoperative measurements were 26° (passive 44°) and 47° (passive 65°) for active supination, 18° (passive 45°) and 49° (passive 68°) for active pronation, 20° (passive 43°) and 42° (passive 60°) for active wrist flexion, and 38° (passive 52°) and 45° (passive 59°) for active wrist extension. \r\nConclusion: Surgical revision of distal radioulnar joint instability using Fulkerson-Watson reconstruction is easier than intraarticular techniques and satisfactorily re-establishes stability, provided that the sigmoid notch is adequate.

ISSN 1017-995X EISSN 2589-1294