An anatomic study of the stabilizing ligaments of the trapezium and trapeziometacarpal joint

Paul C. Bettinger, Ronald L. Linscheid, Richard A. Berger, William P. Cooney, Kai Nan An

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

170 Scopus citations

Abstract

We provide a detailed and comprehensive anatomic description of the ligaments stabilizing the trapezium and trapeziometacarpal joint. Sixteen ligaments were identified. Fourteen ligaments inserted onto the trapezium and 2 others attached independently to the thumb metacarpal. The ligaments inserting onto the trapezium were the superficial anterior oblique, deep anterior oblique (beak ligament), dorsoradial, posterior oblique, ulnar collateral, dorsal trapezio-trapezoid, volar trapezio-trapezoid, dorsal trapezio-second metacarpal; volar trapezio-second metacarpal, trapezio-third metacarpal, volar scaphotrapezial, radial scaphotrapezial, transverse carpal, and trapezio-capitate ligaments. The remaining 2 ligaments attach onto the thumb metacarpal and are the proper intermetacarpal and the dorsal intermetacarpal. The dorsoradial and deep anterior oblique ligaments play a substantial role in stabilizing the trapeziometacarpal joint, and the deep anterior oblique ligament may function as a pivot for the first metacarpal during palmar abduction to allow rotation (pronation). The dorsal trapezio- second metacarpal, volar trapezio-second metacarpal, and trapezio-third metacarpal ligaments function as tension bands and are required to prevent instability from cantilever bending forces on the trapezium.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)786-798
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Hand Surgery
Volume24
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Jul 1999

Keywords

  • Anatomy
  • Basal joint
  • Ligament
  • Trapeziometacarpal joint
  • Trapezium

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Orthopedics and Sports Medicine

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  • Cite this

    Bettinger, P. C., Linscheid, R. L., Berger, R. A., Cooney, W. P., & An, K. N. (1999). An anatomic study of the stabilizing ligaments of the trapezium and trapeziometacarpal joint. Journal of Hand Surgery, 24(4), 786-798. https://doi.org/10.1053/jhsu.1999.0786