Conventional treatments after complicated injuries of the distal radioulnar joint (DRUJ) such as Darrach and Kapandji-Sauvé procedures have many drawbacks, which may eventually lead to a painful unstable distal ulna. The development of DRUJ prosthesis has significantly evolved over the past years. In this study, we assessed the outcome results of patients after DRUJ implant arthroplasty using the Aptis (Scheker) prosthesis.
We identified 13 patients with 14 prosthesis during the past 10 years. Patients underwent DRUJ arthroplasty due to persistent symptoms of instability, chronic pain, and stiffness. Records and follow-up visits were reviewed to find the final post-operative symptoms, pain, range of motion, and grip strength with a mean follow-up of 12 months (range: 2-25 months). Also, patients were contacted prospectively by phone in order to minister the disabilities of the armshoulder and hand (DASH), patient rated wrist evaluation (PRWE), and visual analogue scale (VAS), and to interview regarding satisfaction and progress in daily activities. Eleven patients out of 13 could be reached with a median followup time of 60 months (range: 2 to 102 months).
No patient required removal of the prosthesis. Only two patients underwent secondary surgeries in which both required debridement of the screw tip over the radius. The median DASH score, PRWE score, VAS, and satisfaction were 1.3, 2.5, 0, and 10, respectively. The mean range of flexion, extension, supination, and pronation was 62, 54, 51, and 64, respectively.
Distal radioulnar joint injuries are disabling and patients usually undergo one or more salvage surgeries prior to receiving an arthroplasty. The Scheker prosthesis has shown satisfactory results with 100% survival rate in all reports. The constrained design of this prosthesis gives enough stability to prevent painful subluxation.