If non-surgical and minimally invasive methods are helpless in elbow joint treatment (e.i. in case of severe injuries), the endoprosthesis replacement is required. Because of complex anatomy, endoprosthesis replacement of elbow joint is considered as complicated and long-lasting surgery that is conducted with either general or local anaesthesia; its duration could be 1-2 hours. The German orthopaedic centers achieved excellent results in the replacement of all kinds of human joints.
Apart from other joints subject to large load applied, most often pain in elbow joint proves to be the result of inflammation. Non-surgical methods are predominant for elbow treatment. But if surgery is needed, world-renowned doctors employed by our clinics, (orthopaedic clinics of OrthoLiga, in particular) offer full range surgical treatment including endoprosthesis replacement of elbow joint.
Physiologically the elbow joint is very vulnerable to different injuries that may be caused by incorrectly put or extensive load as well as falling down and blows.
The most common diseases of elbow joint are:
- lateral (external) epicondylitis (tennis elbow);
- mesial (internal) epicondylitis (golfer’s elbow);
- ulnar nerve syndrome;
- chronic laxity of elbow;
- injuries after-effect: dislocation or fracture, sprain/disruption of tendons and muscles.
Joint treatment in Germany is guided with the most innovative principles of human treatment
Different factors define the type of endoprosthesis to be used: age, habitude, health conditions, bone tissue conditions and chronic diseases, if any.
Prior to surgery:
Prior to surgery surgeon in charge would colloquize with the patient, study the clinical chart thoroughly and arrange all required preliminary examinations including X-ray and ultrasonography. Besides, magnetic resonance examination or computer aided tomography might be assigned. On the basis of examinations having been carried out, the surgeon can detect the scope of deformity and wear of the elbow joint, and also to evaluate bone tissue conditions. The main purpose of the examination is to confirm the surgery necessity. It helps also to make a right choice for the type of prosthesis and specific endoprosthesis to be used as well as to plan the surgery itself.
In the course of surgery the patients may lie on the back or sidelong depending of the surgical method chosen. After anaesthesia has taken effect the surgeon makes a cut in the joint area. To avoid unnecessary injuries the muscles are taken apart carefully and then damaged portions of the joint are removed. The next stage consists in polishing and drilling; these operations are preparatory for endoprosthesis placement. At first the trial prosthesis is installed to check fit, stability and mobility of the elbow joint. In case all parameters meet the requirements for fit, stability and mobility, the permanent endoprosthesis is placed and fixed with bone cement. After final testing of endoprosthesis the muscles are returned back into their original position and the cut is stitched. At last the bandage is laid and the hand is fixed with the splint.
After the surgery
Remedial treatment after endoprosthesis replacement of elbow joint takes about 3 months; it begins as early as patient’s one-two weeks’ stay at the hospital. As a rule, on the second day after the surgery some passive exercises is prescribed (physiotherapist moves the patient’s hand in a certain range). Later the patient starts doing exercises without assistance under physiotherapist’s supervision. To avoid suggillation and bleeding as well as to sustain the recovery, right after the surgery a drainage is inserted and analgetics are injected.