Bone Joint J 2015;97-B:1303–8.

The treatment of arthritis of the wrist

J. S. Logan, D. Warwick

Arthritis of the wrist is a painful disabling condition that has various causes and presentations. The traditional treatment has been a total wrist fusion at a price of the elimination of movement. However, forms of treatment which allow the preservation of movement are now preferred. Modern arthroplasties of the wrist are still not sufficiently robust to meet the demands of many patients, nor do they restore normal kinematics of the wrist. A preferable compromise may be selective excision and partial fusion of the wrist using knowledge of the aetiology and pattern of degenerative change to identify which joints can be sacrificed and which can be preserved.


This article provides an overview of the treatment options available for patients with arthritis of the wrist and an algorithm for selecting an appropriate surgical strategy.

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