Houston Methodist. Leading Medicine

Wrist FAQ

Question:

My husband has just been diagnosed with Kiebbock's disease after several months of pain in his wrist. At first he thought he had sprained it but he had no idea how. What causes it?

Answer:

Doctors don't yet know what causes Kienbock's disease. It's not very common and when it does happen, scenarios like your husband's are not uncommon. Because the pain is much like a sprain, most people with the disease don't get help right away, likely unless they know for sure that they didn't hurt their wrist by accident. The disease happens when, for some unkown reason, the blood supply to the lunate, a small bone in the hand near the wrist, is cut off. Because there is no blood nourishing the cells, the bone begins to die. If the disease is caught early enough, casting or splinting is all that is needed. But, if the disease has progressed or the casting or splinting didn't help, surgery may be necessary. Nader Paksima, DO, MPH and Angelo Canedo, BA. Kienbock's Disease. In Journal of Hand Surgery. Dec. 2009. Vol. 34. No. 10. Pp. 1886 -1889.

*Disclaimer:* The information contained herein is compiled from a variety of sources. It may not be complete or timely. It does not cover all diseases, physical conditions, ailments or treatments. The information should NOT be used in place of visit with your healthcare provider, nor should you disregard the advice of your health care provider because of any information you read in this topic.
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