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J Orthop Res. 2015 Sep;33(9):1341-7. doi: 10.1002/jor.22912. Epub 2015 May 18.

The effect of wrist surgery on the kinematic consistency of joint axis reconstruction in a static posture.

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Leon Root, MD Motion Analysis Laboratory, Hospital for Special Surgery, New York.
Department of Orthopedic Surgery, Washington University School of Medicine, Missouri.
Graduate Medical Education, University of Illinois College of Medicine, Illinois.
Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons, New York.
Hand and Upper Extremity Service, Hospital for Special Surgery, New York.


Three-dimensional analysis of wrist motion is a growing focus in orthopedic research, however, our understanding of its validity (accuracy and reliability) remains limited. Nine human cadavers were tested to estimate wrist joint axes alignment in a postural static pose. The objective was to investigate a rater's ability to reliably align three skin- tracked wrist joint coordinate system (WJCS) definitions across baseline and reconstructive wrist states (intact, mid-carpal arthrodesis, and proximal-row carpectomy). Two WJCSs (legacy, anatomic) were based on palpated bony landmarks and the third (functional) was based on both landmarks and passive flexion-extension motion. A coordinate frame based on the anatomic definition was tracked with bone pins and served as a reference. Each WJCS was tested in each wrist state and in three forearm position (45° pronation, neutral, 45° supination). The angular offset about each axis of the WJCS frames were calculated with respect to the reference in flexion-extension, radial-ulnar deviation, and pronation-supination for every iteration. Reliability and root mean square deviation values were analyzed across wrist states. Our data suggest that no WJCS is uniformly more reliable than another. The functional WJCS definition was most consistent across intact and post-operative states for pronation-supination offset, but this was dependent on rater interpretation. It still however offers the practical benefit of requiring fewer landmarks.


calibration; coordinate system; error; surgery; wrist motion

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