Wrist fusion surgery

I have had wrist pain for approx.30years been to numerous drs. diagnosis from sprained to r.a. but no relief recomedations recently visited another hand specialist he found torn ligaments beyond repair recommended wrist fusion with no guarantee it would reduce pain can anyone who has had this surgery give me a heads up on whether it will help me last 3 surgeries were no help so very skeptical on doing surgery which can't be reversed

8 Replies

  • My sister recently had a tendon transplant in the left wrist. It's taken several weeks but she can now do things with he left hand that she hasn't been able to do for years. She is still wearing a splint at night but hopes that with increasing strength she will be able to dispense with that too.

  • Thank you my dr. Hasn't said anything about that option sounds better than fusion what type of symptoms did she complain of


  • she had pain, stiffness, unable to grasp things or pick things up. They took a piece of tendon from her forearm but I don't know any more details than that.

    I do know other people who have had a joint fusion because of lack of function and pain and they all seem much happier than before. If there is lack of function anyway, I suppose the priority is getting rid of the pain. I know I will have my ankles done when they get worse.

  • Thank you for that I will ask my doctor about the tendon placement if not I will more than likely be having both my wrist done in hopes of relieving the pain the people u know that had fusion done r they back to doing everything they did before

  • No it is not possible to go back to doing things that require wrist bending that were done before the joints were damaged by RD.

    The people who have already lost most of that bending but have pain, they seem happy to lose a bit more of the wrist bending in exchange for the loss of the pain.

  • Hi Ron, I have had RA and OA for the last 40+ years and amongst other ops have had both my wrists fused some 30 years ago. I got to the stage where I could not pick up a telephone without considerable pain. I had my right wrist done first with excellent results, then a few years later I had a joint replacement to my left wrist. This proved to be bad because the technology was new and the plastic in the prosthesis started to split. The surgeon then said that the only answer was to fuse this wrist which I agreed to. I have obviously got used to not being able to bend my wrists, awkward at times in the beginning, but painless. I can honestly say that I am really glad I had it done, they are brilliant. I have since had a joint replacement to my right elbow which again is first class and painless. No one can tell you what you have to do, but from my experience I would not hesitate to have the pain relief. I hope this helps you! Very best of luck, Brian

  • Hi Brian thank u for your help many diagnosis over the years not sure who to trust. Ron

  • Very heartening to read some of these posts. Just thought I would mention that when I was with my rheumatologist a few weeks ago and we were discussing possible treatments for me, he said that if the worst came to the worst he would give me a wrist replacement! I didn't ask him for more info as we moved on to other things. But that is interesting, don't you think, and might be an alternative for you. I never knew that that was possible and it may be that it isn't available everywhere. We have a very good hand surgeon here at Leighton Hospital, Crewe, so maybe they are only just developing it. It is certainly worth asking about, I would think.

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