Elbow Joint Replacement

Elbow joint replacement (also called elbow arthroplasty) can effectively treat the problems caused by arthritis of the elbow. The procedure is also becoming more widely used in aging adults to replace joints damaged by fractures. The artificial elbow is considered successful by more than 90 percent of patients who have elbow joint replacement.

This guide will help you understand

  • how the elbow joint works
  • what happens during surgery to replace the elbow joint
  • what you can expect after elbow joint replacement

ANATOMY

How does the elbow joint work?

The elbow joint is made up of three bones: the humerus bone of the upper arm, and the ulna and radius bones of the forearm.

The ulna and the humerus meet at the elbow and form a hinge. This hinge allows the arm to straighten and bend. The large triceps muscle in the back of the arm attaches to the point of the ulna (the olecranon). When this muscle contracts, it straightens out the elbow. The biceps muscles in the front of the arm contracts to bend the elbow.

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