Patients with rheumatoid arthritis may experience severe pain, swelling, and stiffness in their fingers and joints that affect their ability to perform everyday tasks. In those cases, metacarpophalangeal (MCP) joint arthroplasty may be the best solution. The procedure removes damaged bone and tissue and replaces them with synthetic materials. The procedure is used to reduce pain and inflammation and restore mobility in the joint.
MCP Joint Arthroplasty has a very high, long-term success rate and has been used for years to treat those with severe pain or deformity from rheumatoid arthritis.
During the surgery, damaged tissue is removed from the joint, including bone or cartilage. Once removed, it is replaced by a synthetic plate or pad between the joint. This keeps the bones from rubbing together or further damaging the joint. It also brings stability to the joint and allows smooth movement again.
Patients will need physical therapy after surgery to restore strength and mobility in the hand and fingers. The joint usually functions well in the short term, as the silicone replacement doesn’t wear down easily. The silicone can wear down over a long period, and it may need to be replaced years later. Those cases are rare, however.