Extensive posterior exposure of the elbow. A triceps-sparing approach

R. S. Bryan, B. F. Morrey

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

345 Scopus citations


Difficulty with triceps avulsion or loss of continuity after total elbow erthroplasty has prompted the development of a modified posterior approach to the elbow joint. The characteristic feature of this approach is that the triceps mechanism is reflected from medial to lateral in continuity with the forearm fascia and the olecranon and ulnar periosteum. A variant of the technique reflects the extensor mechanism from lateral to medial. The ulnar collateral ligament may be released from the humerus to provide more exposure, but the ligament must then be securely reattached. This approach, which provides extensive exposure to the elbow joint, has been employed in 49 consecutive total elbow arthroplasties and results show no loss of triceps function and no significant weakness. The approach has proved useful for treatment of intra-articular fractures of the distal end of the humerus and with synovectomy in the rheumatoid arthritic patient.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)188-192
Number of pages5
JournalClinical Orthopaedics and Related Research
VolumeNo. 166
StatePublished - Jan 1 1982
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Orthopedics and Sports Medicine


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