Elbow replacement is surgery to replace the elbow joint with artificial joint parts (prosthetics).
The elbow joint connects two bones:
The humerus in the upper arm
The ulna in the lower arm
The artificial elbow joint has two stems made of high-quality metal. A metal and plastic hinge joins the stems together and allows the artificial joint to bend. Artificial joints come in different sizes to fit different size people.
You will receive general anesthesia before surgery. This means you will be asleep and pain-free during surgery. Some patient may also receive regional anesthesia. You will also be given medicine to help you relax. Your surgeon will make an cut on the back of your arm to show your elbow joint. The damaged tissue and parts of the arm bones that make up the elbow joint are removed.
A drill is used to make a hole in the center of the two arm bones. The end of the artificial elbow joint are placed into each bone. They are connected with a hinge. The tissue around the elbow is repaired. The wound is closed with stitches, and a bandaged is applied. Your arm may be placed in a splint to keep it stable.
Why the Procedure is Performed
Elbow replacement surgery is usually done if the elbow joint is badly damaged and you have pain or cannot use >your arm. Some causes of damage are:
- Poor outcome from previous elbow surgery
- Rheumatoid arthritis
- Badly broken bone in the upper or lower arm near the elbow
- Badly damaged or torn tissues in the elbow
- Tumor in or around the elbow