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Arthritis Action
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Joint Replacement Surgery in Fingers!

I’ve been told that I have chronic erosive osteoarthritis in 6 of my fingers and that I should consider surgery. I had hoped that I could have a joint replacement but the orthopaedic surgeon told me that patients have unrealistic expectations about what a joint replacement can do in fingers.

Has anybody had joint replacement in their fingers, if yes, has the surgery been successful, or has there been problems? I am desperate to find the best solution as the thought of having to fuse them terrifies me.

4 Replies

Over the past 4 and a half years I have had 3 joint replacements 2 in fingers and one knuckle and 2 end finger joints fused. The main benefit is pain relief as I was in agony with each. The knuckle bends as well as it should but is very clunky. The 1st replacement moved and had to be replaced. I have only had real trouble with the last fusion as the pin moved, had to be removed and replaced. If your pain is unbearable 24/7 I would say surgery is your best option as living on morphine is no picnic. My surgeon has done one at a time. You need to take advice, maybe a second opinion? Good luck

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Thanks for the information. I am definitely seeking a second opinion, but I suspect that he is going to say the same as the first. Two of my fingers are so badly deformed that it’s getting more and more difficult to be able to do the day to day stuff without having to always be asking friends and family for help. I’m truly independent and stubborn and I won’t lie it’s scare me that I’m going to end up with very little hand function.

I am wondering if I should try and save the fingers that aren’t badly deformed or do I sort out the ones that need surgery now. My orthopaedic surgeon has assured me that they can sort them, but it’s difficult to know what to do for the best.


I would sort out the joint that hurts the most, good luck

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Hi Just wondered if you had got any further in pursuing joint replacement in your fingers? I have advanced OA (diagnosed by me, GP not interested). Index finger and middle finger deviated at PIP joint and little bend. Hopeless for grip and forever knocking them as they get in the way. Too late for exercises or splints as damage is done. If i pursue this I suspect it will be for a surgical opinion, but i want flexibility rather than pain relief. They aren't painful if i sit and do nothing. Swell if used. Any thoughts?


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