Extensor carpi ulnaris and flexor carpi ulnaris tenodesis of the unstable distal ulna.
A procedure for stabilizing the distal ulna using the extensor carpi ulnaris and flexor carpi ulnaris is described. Seven patients who had sustained posttraumatic distal ulnar dorsal instability and articular degeneration and one patient with instability caused by rheumatoid arthritis were operated on. All eight obtained stable ulnae with mean motion of 62 degrees of supination and 86 degrees of pronation (mean increase of 32 degrees of supination and 43 degrees of pronation). Follow-up averaged 28 months (range, 18 to 63 months). The tenodesis, using a weave of a distally-based slip of flexor carpi ulnaris and a proximally-based slip of extensor carpi ulnaris combined with a Darrach procedure, is a reliable, reproducible salvage procedure for stabilizing the degenerated distal radioulnar joint and for salvaging the symptomatic unstable ulna after excessive distal ulna resection.