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What Is A MP Joint Arthroplasty?

Also known as metacarpophalangeal joint arthroplasty, this surgical procedure is performed to replace the damaged or diseased metacarpophalangeal (MP) joint in the hand. The MP joint is the joint located between the metacarpal bone (the long bone of the hand) and the proximal phalanx (the first bone of the finger). This differs from PIP Joint Arthroplasty which involves surgically replacing a damaged or diseased proximal interphalangeal joint. 


    • Severe hand-join damage and arthritis causes MP joint pain.
    • Trauma or deformities result in painful MP joints.
    • Surgeons need to address intractable pain or stiffness.
    • Limited motion is a clear indicator of MP joint issues.


    • Patients experiencing pain, stiffness, motion loss, or impaired function undergo this surgery.
    • Surgeons choose either regional or general anesthesia based on the patient’s condition and surgical technique.
    • To access the joint and surrounding structures, an incision is made over the affected joint.
    • The surgical team removes damaged cartilage and bone from the joint surfaces, preparing it for the implant.
    • Subsequently, they insert an artificial joint, typically composed of metal or plastic, into the joint space.
    • This implant replicates natural MP joint movement, ultimately enhancing hand function and reducing pain.

    Types of MP Joint Arthroplasty:

      • Silicone implant arthroplasty:In silicone implant arthroplasty, surgeons use a silicone implant to replace the damaged joint surfaces.
      • PyroCarbon implant arthroplasty: PyroCarbon implant arthroplasty involves replicating natural joint movement with a lightweight and durable pyrocarbon implant.


    • Recovery time varies based on the severity of the injury and the chosen surgical approach.
    • In addition, physical therapy or hand rehabilitation may be advised to enhance hand strength and flexibility.
    • Furthermore, during the initial healing phase, a splint or protective brace might be necessary to support the hand.


    • Noting that recovery time and postoperative instructions can vary based on several factors:

      • The location and severity of join pain.
      • The surgical technique employed.
      • The patient’s overall health.
    • Success relies on factors like the patient’s health, joint damage severity, and their commitment to postoperative care and rehab. In many instances, MP joint arthroplasty can notably alleviate pain, enhance hand function, and boost the patient’s quality of life.

    In brief, MP joint arthroplasty is a complex surgical procedure that requires the expertise of a skilled hand surgeon experienced in performing joint replacement surgeries. Patients considering MP joint arthroplasty should discuss the benefits, risks, and potential complications with their healthcare provider before proceeding with the surgery. Proper patient selection and adherence to postoperative care are essential for achieving successful outcomes.


    If you would like to speak to an Orthopedic Specialist, give us a call at 817-697-4038, or contact us over the web. Tele-medicine appointments are also available.