Outcome of Kienböck's disease 22 years after distal radius shortening osteotomy

E. E. J. Raven, D. Haverkamp, R. K. Marti

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Loading of the lunate in patients with Kienböck's disease and a negative ulnar variance provide the rationale for a radial shortening osteotomy. This osteotomy decreases forces transmitted from the radius to the lunate. We retrospectively reviewed 12 patients with Kienböck's disease who had 13 radial shortening osteotomies to ascertain whether the reported short- and medium-term results endured in the long-term. We evaluated nine osteotomies in nine of the 12 patients with a minimum of 16 years followup (average, 22 years; range, 16-31 years). Three patients died and one was lost to followup. For the nine patients, the range of motion was impaired compared with the normal side. Grip strength was on average 90% of the unaffected side. The average visual analog scale score for pain was 2.4 and the average Disabilities of the Arm, Shoulder, and Hand score was 14 at latest followup. In eight patients, the Lichtman classification of Kienböck's disease did not change at followup, but in three patients there was radiographic progression of the disease, which occurred during the first 10 years postoperatively. The medium- and long-term results therefore were comparable. We recommend radial shortening in stable wrists (Stage 3A or less) with a negative ulnar variance. The radius should be shortened to the level of the ulna, normally 4 to 6 mm, after which stable (plate) fixation should be performed under compression
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)137-141
JournalClinical orthopaedics and related research
Publication statusPublished - 2007

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