Pyrocarbon proximal interphalangeal joint arthroplasty: Minimum two-year follow-up

A. C. Watts*, A. J. Hearnden, I. A. Trail, M. J. Hayton, D. Nuttall, J. K. Stanley

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (journal)peer-review

57 Citations (Scopus)


Purpose: To report the outcome and complications from pyrocarbon proximal interphalangeal (PIP) joint arthroplasty at a minimum of 2 years of follow-up. Methods: A retrospective case review was performed on 72 patients with an average age of 57 years, and a total of 97 pyrocarbon PIP joint arthroplasties. Patient demographics, diagnosis, implant revisions, and other repeat surgeries were recorded. Subjective outcome was evaluated at latest follow-up with the Disabilities of the Arm, Shoulder, and Hand score; Patient Evaluation Measure; and visual analog scores of pain, satisfaction, and appearance. Objective outcomes included PIP joint range of motion, grip strength, and radiographic assessment of alignment and loosening. Results: The principal diagnosis was primary osteoarthritis in 43 patients(60%), posttraumatic arthritis in 14 (19%), rheumatoid arthritis in 9 (13%), and psoriatic arthritis in 6 (8%). The average follow-up was 60 months (range, 24-108 mo). Twenty-two of 97 digits (23%) had repeat surgery without revision, and 13 digits (13%) had revision at an average of 15 months. There were no significant differences in preoperative and postoperative range of motion. The average Disabilities of the Arm, Shoulder, and Hand score was 22, and the average pain score was zero. Implant migration and loosening was observed but was not related to clinical outcome or revision. Conclusions: The survival of pyrocarbon PIP joint arthroplasty was 85% (83 of 97) at 5 years of follow-up, with high patient satisfaction. Patients should be advised that the procedure achieves good relief of pain but does not improve range of motion. Type of study/level of evidence: Therapeutic IV.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)882-888
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Hand Surgery
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 30 May 2012


  • Arthroplasty
  • proximal interphalangeal joint
  • pyrocarbon
  • survivorship


Dive into the research topics of 'Pyrocarbon proximal interphalangeal joint arthroplasty: Minimum two-year follow-up'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this