Total elbow arthroplasty has benefited greatly from advancements in implant design, improved understanding of elbow biomechanics, and growing surgical experiences. Today, total elbow arthroplasty is no longer limited to the elderly rheumatoid patient population. There is growing support for its role in acute comminuted distal humerus fractures and posttraumatic disorders of the elbow. These new indications have shown promising results when applied selectively to the elderly, osteoporotic patient population. Despite the advances in total elbow arthroplasty, complications such as instability illustrate the need for continued improvements toward more physiologic implant designs and a better understanding of their relation to native elbow biomechanics. Recent studies have emphasized the roles of the anterior oblique component of the medial collateral ligament, the ulnar insertion component of the lateral collateral ligament, and the radial head prosthesis in elbow stability. This review will highlight recent studies and controversies in instability following total elbow arthroplasty as well as current advancements in the indication of total elbow arthroplasty.
ASJC Scopus subject areas