The Swanson Radial Head Prosthesis

  • Bruno Martinelli


In fractures where osteosynthesis was not feasible, prosthetic replacement for the radial head has been resorted to, using Silastic implants (Fig. 1) [1, 2]. Prosthetic replacement is the intervention of choice to avoid the possible complications of resection: e.g. loss of radio-humeral contact, elbow instability, worsening of cubitus valgus (the radial head [3] is, in fact, a secondary stabilizer in opposing valgus stress and it plays a primary role whenever there is a simultaneous impairment of the medial collateral ligament), radial shortening, distal radio-ulnar subdislocation (the interosseous membrane and the triangular fibrocartilage are involved) [4, 5, 6]; ossification starting from the resection surface, reduction of elbow movement width, reduction in supinatory excursion, wrist pain, and delayed functional recovery.


Radial Head Medial Collateral Ligament Silicon Particle Wrist Pain Prosthetic Replacement 
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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Italia 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  • Bruno Martinelli
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Orthopaedic SurgeryUniversity of Trieste Hospital of CattinaraTriesteItaly

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