Wrist pain is common, however, like lower back pain, but often difficult to relate to a specific injury or pathology (Chan, Teunis and Ring, 2014). The triangular fibrocartilage tear is responsible for stability, cushioning and smooth movement in the wrist joint.
The term “triangular fibrocartilage complex” (TFCC) describes the ligamentous and cartilaginous structures that suspend the distal radius and ulnar carpus from the distal ulna (bones forming top of the wrist). The “TFCC” is the major ligamentous stabilizer of the distal radioulnar joint and the ulnar carpus (Carlson, 2012).
It can either be traumatic or from a degenerative process. This is usually due to repetitive loading and movements.
Physiotherapy treatment can help to manage the symptoms and in more severe cases surgical intervention may be required. If the tear is degenerative and large it requires surgery. However, in most tears conservative treatment is successful with splinting and immobilizing.
Chan J.J., Teunis T. and Ring D., 2014, Prevalence of Triangular Fibrocartilage Complex Abnormalities Regardless of Symptoms Rise With Age: Systematic Review and Pooled Analysis, 472(12), pp: 3987-3994
Carlson M., 2012, Elite Athlete’s Hand and Wrist Injury, An issue of Hand Clinics- E-Book, 28(3), p: 324