kienbock-diseaseKienbock’s disease is also known as avascular necrosis of the lunate. The condition occurs when lunate bone (bones of the wrist) lose blood supply, which leads to bone death. This bone is crucial to the wrist, as it helps with movement and joint support.

When damage occurs to the lunate, stiffness, pain and often arthritis occurs. However, arthritis typically happens later in disease progression. Avascular necrosis commonly occurs in men, ages 20-40.

Causes of Kienbock’s Disease

Kienbock’s disease does not have a single cause. Although its often caused by multiple factors, such as:

  • Trauma: When multiple accidents occur in the same area, such as a sprained or fractured wrist, it may be the cause of the disease.
  • Skeletal problems: Sometimes, the ulna is shorter than the radius, and this can cause problems. Or, there is an irregularity in the shape of the lunate bone, causing issues.
  • Additional medical conditions: Avascular necrosis is common in people who specific conditions. And include those that affect the blood supply, and associated with lupus, sickle cell anemia, and cerebral palsy.

Symptoms of the Disease

Common symptoms of avascular necrosis are as follows:

  • Tenderness near the lunate bone
  • Wrist pain
  • Stiffness of the wrist
  • Decreased wrist movement
  • Swelling & inflammation

This disease is a slow-progressing one. Sometimes, the disease even goes unrecognized for months or years. Diagnosing Kienbock’s early is uncommon and difficult.

However, when it is diagnosed, it’s typically by reviewing the history, performing a physical exam, and x-rays. Furthermore, there are additional tests that may be required, such as blood supply tests.

Treatment of Kienbock’s Disease

Depending on the severity of the condition, will determine treatment. In the early stages of the disease, treatment is often only immobilization. However, if the condition is more advanced, surgery is often considered. Physical therapy can also help to relieve discomfort and restore the function of the wrist.

If you are experiencing pain and discomfort in the wrist, call us at 888-409-8006. Our office offers comprehensive diagnostic testing, and award-winning physicians, wrist surgeon, and pain management specialists. We are here to help!