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What is Triquetrolunate Instability?

Triquetrolunate instability is the instability that takes place between the triquetrum or medial column and the lunate bones or the central column of the wrist. The triquetrum and the lunate comprise the ulnar side of the proximal carpal row at the wrist. This joint is supported by the lunotriquetral (LT) ligament.

Causes of Triquetrolunate Instability

Causes of triquetrolunate instability may include a fall on an outstretched hand or a sudden force to the hand.

Symptoms of Triquetrolunate Instability

Common symptoms include:

  • Weakness
  • Pain
  • Stiffness
  • Clicking sound when moving

Diagnosis of Triquetrolunate Instability

Your doctor diagnoses triquetrolunate instability by performing a thorough physical examination of the wrist. Additional tests such as radiographs and MRI may be ordered to confirm the diagnosis.

Treatment of Triquetrolunate Instability

Minor-to-moderate cases may heal with conservative treatments which involve:

  • Rest
  • Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs to help with pain and swelling
  • A static wrist orthosis to keep your wrist immobile during the healing phase
  • A corticosteroid injection to provide temporary, immediate pain relief
  • Stretching and strengthening exercises under a occupational therapist to prevent re-injury

However, if the condition is severe, surgical reconstruction may be required. The surgery involves using a tendon graft and reconstructing the ligament or reconnecting the ligament to the bone.