Triangular Fibrocartilage Complex Tear: Orthopedic Plano

by Administrator 26. October 2016 08:15

The Triangular Fibrocartilage Complex (TFCC) Tear is a complex structure between the ends of the small carpal bones and the ulna (in the wrist). It provides stability to the forearm bones (radius and ulna). When this structure gets injured or torn, it results in Triangular Fibrocartilage Complex (TFCC) Tear.

There are two main types of TFCC Tears:

  • Type 1 Tears: These are called Traumatic tears and occur due to excessive use of hand or force applied.
  • Type 2 Tears: Wear and tear of cartilage takes place with the progression of the age.


  • Degenerative changes.
  • Power drill injuries.
  • Fall on an outstretched hand
  • Excessive use of badminton racquet or a cricket bat.


  • Pain in the ulna which increases by performing any physical activity
  • Swelling in the wrist
  • Weakness
  • Clicking sound produced while moving the wrist
  • Low hand grip


An orthopedic doctor may conduct physical examination of the wrist and analyze the symptoms experienced by the patient. An X-ray test may be conducted to check for any fracture or dislocation in the wrist. The doctor may even recommend an MRI test which may help to visualize the enlarged image of the injury. Wrist arthrography may also be performed to determine the severity of the condition.


Non-Surgical Treatment Options

  • Splint: The doctor may recommend wearing a splint to immobilize the joint and promote healing. The wrist may be immobilized for 4-6 weeks depending on the extent of damage.
  • Medication: Anti-inflammatory medications may be prescribed by the doctor to reduce swelling. Cortisone injections may be administered in case of severe pain.  
  • Physical Therapy:  Certain exercises may be suggested by the doctor to provide strength and flexibility to the wrist joint. These exercises may also help to improve the range of motion of the wrist joint.
  • Rest: Adequate rest must be provided to the affected area. Activities that strain the wrist joint must be avoided.

Surgical Treatment

If non-surgical treatment fails to provide relief, a surgery may be recommended. The doctor may make small incisions to clean the torn edges and remove damaged tissues in the wrist joint. Tears can also be repaired through sutures.


TFCC tear can take a long time to recover, ranging from 8 to 12 weeks.

Dr. Knoll is a hand surgeon in Frisco, TX providing effective treatment for Triangular Fibrocartilage Complex (TFCC) Tear. To schedule an appointment, you can call at (214) 618 - 5502.

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