Radial Head Replacement
The radial head of the ulna is unusually susceptible to fracture compared to the rest of the elbow joint. This has lead to the development of many different methods of relieving the pain and stiffness associated with the problem.
One procedure popular in the case of complex elbow trauma is Radial Head Replacement (also known as Radial Head Arthroplasty). This procedure removes the deformed radial head and replaces it with a inert substance, such as polyethylene, shaped to fit in the vacated space. A metal prosthesis might be used instead as they confer very different advantages to the patient.
The removal of extra fragments of bone as well as debridement of the dead tissue caused by the trauma is possible through arthroscopy. The actual replacement of the radial head requires open surgery to fully visualize the joint and ensure a firm attachment of the prosthetic.