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J Hand Surg Am. 2013 Oct;38(10):1883-95. doi: 10.1016/j.jhsa.2013.07.013.

Vascularized graft from the metatarsal base for reconstructing major osteochondral distal radius defects.

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  • 1Instituto de Cirugía Plástica y de la Mano, Private Practice and Hospital Mutua Montañesa, Santander, Spain. Electronic address: drpinal@drpinal.com.



To present our experience of reconstructing distal radius articular defects with a vascularized osteochondral graft from the metatarsal base and to present the mid-term outcomes.


Seven patients (average age, 36 y; range, 26-55 y) who had reconstruction of major defects of the articular surface of the radius are presented. In 5, the lunate facet and sigmoid notch were reconstructed; in 1, an isolated defect on the surface of the lunate facet was reconstructed; and in 1, the scaphoid facet was reconstructed. In 6, the base of the third metatarsal was transferred, and in 1, the base of the second was transferred.


All flaps survived without complications. At the latest follow-up (range, 20 mo to 8 y), the flexion-extension arc improved an average of 50°, and the pain on a visual analog scale decreased from 8 to 1 on average. Disabilities of the Arm, Shoulder, and Hand score improved from 54 to 11 on average. One patient did not improve. No major complaints related to the donor site were mentioned (average American Orthopedic Foot and Ankle Society score of 96/100).


Our mid-term results are promising; however, the decision-making process and the operation are complex. The operation is not indicated when the carpals are devoid of cartilage or when the defect involves the whole radius surface.

Copyright © 2013 American Society for Surgery of the Hand. All rights reserved.


Arthroscopy; distal radius malunion; wrist osteoarthritis; wrist pain

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