Rotational stability of the carpus relative to the forearm

Marco J.P.F. Ritt, Paul R. Stuart, Lawrence J. Berglund, Ronald L. Linscheid, William P. Conney, Kai Nan An

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

35 Scopus citations


To perform rotational tasks adequately, the rotational laxity between the radius and the carpus must be constrained within a certain limit. The contribution of nine individual capsuloligamentous structures to the rotational stability of the radiocarpal joint was studied using 14 freshfrozen human cadaveric specimens. Torque-rotation curves, with sequential section of the soft-tissue structures, were used to calculate the percentage contribution of each individual structure. The primary pronation constraint was the palmar radioscaphocapitate ligament. The contributions to supination constraint were more complex; the dorsal radiotriquetral ligament was dominant, assisted by the palmar ulnolunate ligament. Structures originating from the ulna changed their major constraint contribution with forearm orientation, whereas those with a radial origin had a constant contribution independent of forearm rotation. Injury of these structures may lead to rotational instability at the radiocarpal level and should be considered when treating carpal instabilities.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)305-311
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Hand Surgery
Issue number2
StatePublished - Mar 1995

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Orthopedics and Sports Medicine


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