Osteoarthritis of the basal joint of the thumb
As explained on a surgical article published on drbadia.com, Osteoarthritis of the basal joint of the thumb is the second most common location for arthritis in the hand. However, it is by far the most functionally disabling. While distal interphalangeal joint arthritis is much more common, it is often minimally symptomatic, and the only good treatment option is fusion of this joint. This method of treatment is simple, and the results are reproducible with excellent return of function. Conversely, due to the many degrees of freedom involved in basal joint motion, the treatment is much more complex and the results less predictable. Not only is motion at this joint so functionally critical, but incredible stresses are transmitted across the basal joint even with simple, everyday activities. The forces seen at the tip during pinch, for example, are transmitted tenfold to the base of the thumb.
Surgical Options for Thumb Basal Joint Arthritis
- Complete excision of the trapezium
- A more complex modification of this procedure has been described as the LRTI (ligament reconstruction tendon interposition)
- Total joint arthroplasty with silicone replacement
- Total joint arthroplasty using a semi-constrained, cemented implant
- Arthroscopy may be most beneficial in the early stages of basal joint arthritis
- More advanced arthroscopic stages dictate more aggressive treatment
Frequently Asked Questions on Arthritis
- What is Arthritis?
- What are the most common types of arthritis?
- What causes arthritis?
- What are the symptoms of arthritis?
- Am I at risk for arthritis?
- Are people with arthritis more likely to develop complications from the flu?
- How many adults in the United States have arthritis?
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- What should I do if I think I have arthritis?
- How is arthritis treated?
- How can I manage my arthritis?
- Is exercise good for people who have arthritis?
- What should I do if I have pain when I exercise?
- How does being overweight affect arthritis?