Implant arthroplasty in the hand has a 20 year history and is a rapidly advancing and exciting field. It provides pain relief and retains motion in the joint, but there remains issues of durability of the implants and possible complications of the non biological material in the hand. Implant designs and material technology are constantly evolving and it is likely that in the near future, results for implant arthroplasty for the hand will be as favourable as that in the large joints of the lower limbs, which have a longer history.
arthrodesis is biological and a permanent solution. It is done for younger
patients with high functional demands of their hands. It provides good
stability and pain relief, but at the expense of joint mobility. It is done
most frequently for the terminal finger joints.