Thumb Pain

A New Method of Base of The Thumb Arthritis Reconstruction

The number of patients I see in my office for base of the thumb arthritis seems to have increased exponentially in the last few years. This is not because the number of people that have arthritis has increased, but more people are seeking help for the pain. They are finding there is relief for this problem that is successful enough to undergo surgery.

For the last 25 years, I have performed a removal of the trapezium bone and replaced the defect with a rolled up tendon. The removal of the trapezium in the last few years has been stabilized by ligament reconstruction and tendon interposition (LRTI). This has been a very successful procedure but sometimes the thumb subsides (shortens) and is a little less stable than the normal thumb.

In an attempt to improve the treatment of the base of the thumb arthritis, many new procedures have been tried over the last 25 years. In my opinion, no new or previous procedure has been better than the ligament reconstruction and tendon interposition after resection of the trapezium – until now.

New Treatment for Base of the Thumb Arthritis

Recently a new procedure has been released that removes less bone, maintains length of the thumb and is very stable. Dr. Jorge Orbay, of Miami, Florida, has developed the Stablyx prosthesis. He has now done this procedure over the last three years and has completed reconstructions in over 250 patients. Dr. Orbay has developed many successful orthopedic and hand surgery innovations over the last few years.

The Stablyx prosthesis leaves the trapezium in place and only a 2 mm portion of the involved base of the metacarpal bone is removed. The metacarpal then is broached to accept the prosthesis which has a saddle-like covering of the trapezium. The prosthesis does not require removal of a tendon and makes the procedure less involved.

If the prosthesis for some reason does not relieve the pain or lack of function, the prosthesis can be removed and converted to a trapezium resection with a ligament reconstruction and tendon interpositional graft (LRTI).

The Stablyx prosthesis and procedure can be seen on video by Googling “Stablyx base of the thumb reconstruction”. I have no financial conflict of interest in the Stablyx prosthesis.

More information on Basal Thumb Arthritis

To obtain more detailed information about conditions of the hand, wrist, forearm and elbow, visit our Patient Education page.

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Whatever the reason you seek treatment, you'll find superb care at the offices of Dr. William Van Wyk. Put yourself on the road to recovery. Call us today at 817-877-3113 for an appointment.

Please Note: The medical information contained on this website is provided to increase your knowledge and understanding of hand and upper extremity problems or conditions. This information should not be interpreted as the Van Wyk Hand Center’s recommendation for a specific medical or surgical treatment plan.