The Wrist: Anatomical and Pathophysiological Approach to Diagnosis and Treatment

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In thc space of ooly a few years, reconstructive surgery of the skeleton of the hand has become a foeus of attention. Thc reason for this has been the advent of principles and techniques of stable internal fixation, tbc unparaJleled advantages of which are particularly evident in the treatment of the complex, multi- structural lesions so typical of injuries of the hand, and also in procedures such as replantation or revascularisatioss. What a striking contrast on the other hand is to be seen in the slow and painful progress made in Dur understanding of the biomechanics of the radiocarpal joint! This is most elo- quently ilIustrated by the embryonie state of prosthetic surgery of the wrist, compared with the sophisticatcd advances made in hip and knee surgery. Yet it is undeniable that painful condi- tions involving dysfunctions of the wrist are increasing in number and affect young people in particular; this should spur us on to seek more effective therapeutic solutions.