The elbow joint is a complex joint: the distal humerus has an olecranon fossa that houses the olecranon process of the ulna; also the radial head articulates with the humerus, and medially with the ulna. This complex relationship between various joint surfaces produces two sets of freedom of movement: flexion-extension of the elbow, pronation and supination of the forearm.
Degenerative diseases of the elbow involve the front and rear compartment: chondromatosis of the joint, osteoarthritis of the various compartments of the elbow, post-traumatic osteoarthritis in outcomes of dislocations or fracture-dislocation of the elbow, and so on.
Traumatic injuries of the ligaments (collateral, ulnar and radial) can heal without special post-traumatic problems or with severe limitations and deformities that facilitate and accelerate the onset of post-traumatic osteoarthritis.
Arthroscopy of the elbow is the golden standard in the treatment of the most common traumatic and degenerative elbow pathologies.
In the case of extensive and severe degeneration of the articular surfaces, prosthetic implants, normally cemented -retentive or partially retentive, can be a valuable tool for the resolution of elbow pain and the restore of joint function.
In fractures of the radial head, minimally invasive instruments and dedicated plates and screws allow the restoration of anatomy and function; anyway when severely comminuted fractures of the radial head do not allow good surgical reconstruction, prosthetic implants currently represent a brilliant and reliable solution.