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BMC Musculoskelet Disord. 2010 Jan 15;11:9. doi: 10.1186/1471-2474-11-9.

Clinical study of the factors affecting radioulnar deviation of the wrist joint.

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  • 1Medical School, University of Ioannina, Panepistimiou Avenue, Ioannina, Greece.



The radioulnar carpal joint is critical for hand and wrist function. Radioulnar deviation indicates distal radioulnar joint flexibility and reflects the structure and function of the carpal bones, ulna, radius and ligaments. The present study examined whether radioulnar deviation is affected by gender, manual labor, playing a musical instrument, playing sport, handedness, previous fracture or prior inflammation. The study used clinical findings based on anatomical landmarks


The ulnar, radial and total deviations for both left and right hands were measured in 300 subjects (157 men and 143 women) of mean age 21.7 years. Measurements were made with the forearm in a fixed pronated position using a novel specially designed goniometer. The gender of each subject was recorded, and information on playing of sport, playing a musical instrument, manual labor, handedness, and history of fracture or inflammation was sought. Data were analyzed using a multifactor ANOVA test.


No statistically significant difference (p-value > 0.05) was found between those comparing groups except the total deviation of athletes' left hand versus the total deviation of non athletes' left hand (p-value 0.041 < 0.05) and the radial deviation of manual workers' left hand and non manual workers' left hand (p-value 0.002 < 0.05).


This study was based on clinical findings using anatomical landmarks. We found that manual workers and athletes showed greater left hand flexibility. This suggests that activities that place chronic stress on the radiocarpal joint can independently affect radioulnar deviation.

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