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You are in - Home >> Plastic, Hand and Reconstructive Microsurgery and Burns >> Wrist >> Tfcc Tears

Tfcc Tears

What is TFCC?

TFCC is the Triangular Fibro - Cartilaginous Complex, which is a thick disc of tissue in the wrist between the ulna bone in the forearm and the small carpal bones.

What does it do?

It acts as a 'shock absorber' in the wrist, decreasing the load being transmitted to the ulna bone. It is also stabilises rotation movements of the forearm.

Is a TFCC tear common?

Injury to the TFCC is surprisingly common, though most are mild and resolve spontaneously. Tears can also occur with degeneration, usually due to age.

What are its symptoms?

Pain and swelling on the inside aspect of the wrist is the usual symptom. With degenerative tears, pain may come only with prolonged activity which slowly becomes worse. If these symptoms persist, an MRI scan is done to diagnose this problem. X - Rays may actually be normal.

How can they be treated?

Mild injuries can get better with rest. More severe tears require to be repaired. This is usually done through 'keyhole' surgery or arthroscopy. Degenerative tears may need only to be 'cleaned up' and this too can be performed with Arthroscopy.

How long does healing take?

Hospital stay of no more than a couple of days is required. Movements are usually begun within a few days itself. Activities can be resumed by about 1 1/2 - 2 months.

Normal X - ray in a Patient with TFCC Injury

Post - Operative Movements after TFCC Repair by Arthroscopy

Acute Traumatic tear of the TFCC, as seen During Wrist Arthroscopy

Degenerative Central Perforation of the TFCC, as seen During Wrist Arthroscopy.