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Arthroscopy. 2011 Oct;27(10):1371-8. doi: 10.1016/j.arthro.2011.05.020. Epub 2011 Aug 24.

Arthroscopic-assisted repair of avulsed triangular fibrocartilage complex to the fovea of the ulnar head: a 2- to 4-year follow-up study.

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Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, Hokkaido University School of Medicine, Sapporo, Japan.



The objective of this study was to conduct a follow-up evaluation of an arthroscopic reattachment technique using an avulsed deep component of the triangular fibrocartilage complex (dc-TFCC) from the fovea of the distal ulna (ulnar fovea).


A retrospective study was performed on a consecutive cohort of 12 patients who underwent arthroscopic reattachment of the avulsed dc-TFCC into the ulnar fovea over a 24-month period. The mean age was 31 years (range, 20 to 50 years). There were 6 men and 6 women. This technique anchors the avulsed portion of the dc-TFCC to the ulnar fovea by means of a repair suture passed through the created osseous tunnel from the ulnar neck to the foveal surface. Postoperative clinical and functional outcomes were quantitatively evaluated with the Modified Mayo Wrist Score. The Disabilities of the Arm, Shoulder and Hand questionnaire served to assess each patient's subjective outcome. A questionnaire regarding each patient's return to his or her previous job was also completed. Radiographic evaluation was based on computed tomography and magnetic resonance imaging examinations.


At the mean follow-up of 30 months, all patients had significant reduction of wrist pain. The mean Modified Mayo Wrist Score was 92.5 ± 7.5, and all patients were rated as having excellent or good clinical results. The Disabilities of the Arm, Shoulder and Hand score significantly improved from 59.5 ± 18.5 to 7.7 ± 11.9 postoperatively (P < .0001). Of the 9 working patients, 7 returned to their previous work. Two patients had occasional extensor carpi ulnaris tendinitis after surgery. Magnetic resonance images at 12 weeks postoperatively showed findings indicating attachment of the triangular fibrocartilage complex (TFCC) to the fovea.


Arthroscopic reattachment of the avulsed TFCC to the ulnar fovea by the described technique is a valid alternative for treating avulsion of the foveal TFCC insertion.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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