Posttraumatic Elbow Contracture

Gregory Rafijah


Curr Orthop Pract. 2014;25(3):213-216. 

In This Article


Instability after contracture release may result and require stabilization with hinged external fixation and with or without ligament reconstruction using tendon grafts. The need for stabilization of the elbow after contracture release should be anticipated preoperatively.[20,21] However, treatment of instability after a contracture has been released can be managed with hinged external fixation alone without ligament reconstruction. One study reported maintenance of an 871 improvement at 5 yr without recurrence of instability after radical capsulectomy and hinged external fixation without ligament reconstruction.[6] Wang et al.[22] reported 25 patients treated for posttraumatic elbow capsular contracture with hinged fixator distraction arthrolysis without surgical resection. The resulting flexion-extension arc improved from 33.4° to 105.6°.