ePlasty: Vol. 12
Anatomic Landmarks for Basal Joint Injections
Ron Hazani, MD, Nitin J. Engineer, MD, Josh Elston, BS, and Bradon J. Wilhelmi, MD

University of Louisville School of Medicine, Division of Plastic surgery, Louisville, KY


Correspondence: ronmdsurg@hotmail.com

Objective: Basal joint arthritis is a common cause of pain and disability, particularly in elderly women. Corticosteroid injection with splinting provides a reliable long-term relief for patients with mild arthritis. Proper location of the basal joint with anatomic landmarks can facilitate diagnosis and treatment of basal joint arthritis while avoiding inadvertent injury to local structures. The purpose of this study is to identify bony anatomic landmarks for basal joint injections and aid clinicians in avoiding inadvertent injury to surrounding structures on the radial side of the wrist. Methods: Twenty fresh cadaveric wrists were dissected with the aid of loupe magnification. The distal edge of the radial styloid and the palpable dorsal aspect of the thumb metacarpophalangeal joint were used as bony anatomic landmarks for the identification of the basal joint along a longitudinal vector. Measurements of the distance from our anatomic landmarks to the basal joint space were recorded. The locations of the radial artery and the superficial branch of the radial nerve were noted in relation to the borders of the anatomic snuffbox at the basal joint level. Results: The basal joint of the thumb is located 2.44 .......