Partial wrist fusion

Hi, I haven't been on here for a while so I hope you are all well!

I found out a few weeks ago that I have to have either a total wrist fusion or a partial (radiolunate) wrist fusion.

I had a further phonecall with the surgeon this morning to see what I had decided (I'm going for the partial fusion) and I asked him what recovery would be like in terms of work.

He said that I'd have to be off work for 3-4 months but I really can't afford that at all. I'm a receptionist so my work is mainly on the computer and it's my non dominant wrist (right) that needs done so does anyone think it would be possible to return earlier and just not use that hand? Honestly at this point I'm considering not having the surgery because I honestly don't have the money to stay off that long and it's highly unlikely that work will give me sick pay so I'll be on SSP. I'm going to speak to him when I go in for my next appointment to discuss it but I'm majorly stressing out right now.

I don't know what to do at all. Has anyone been though something similar or has had a partial wrist fusion and could tell me what the recovery process is like?

Thank you,

Sophie X


  • PeterJ
    PeterJ Administrator Posts: 676

    Hi @Sophie98 I think you are right in that you need to discus with the surgeon what to do. I can understand your reservations regarding work - I've put a link in to info on our website

    I hope that you can get more detailed advice from the surgeon about the impact the surgery will have on your life and work, and there may be others on the forum who can share their experiences

    Best wishes

    Peter (mod)

  • Morning Sophie I've had both wrists fused right 1999 left 2005 as a gardener was a bit pain as i had just started brick laying course for the next year...

    Not sure how things have come along in surgery but my left is my non dominant hand so in my case they take the top of your ilac crest (top of hip joint) they open the hand take the cartilage out rough the joint up and grind the hip joint bit and sprinkle in the wrist joint a metal plate on top and 4 small screws and 1 long one...

    Two drain balls either side of the wound in a bk slab plaster 2 weeks clips out plaster on for 6 weeks so i don't see why you can't go bk to work but your firm may let you work from home...

    One thing with you Must do.your finger stretching ie thumb slides down all fingers on the hand ring finger and little finger is a killer but you must do them...

    They may give you a foam Bowman sling if you can find a way to hang it at night to keep your arm up the better please note i had a full fusion i also had 6months full pay but you should check because the law changed a few years bk so even temps get holiday and sick pay but you need to check...

    I can still do most of my sports hobbies and am still a groundsman even did a blue belt grading with my plaster on but as my opp was in 2005 they might do it different so.good luck with what ever you decide i had mine done before i was 40 and i would do it again quality of life these days is a must thanks Peter..

  • Sophie98
    Sophie98 Member Posts: 29

    Thank you!

    I'm definitely going to speak to the surgeon about going back earlier.

    I'm a receptionist so my job isn't really heavy handed and hopefully I can go back even if it's on light duties as I can't afford to be on SSP for that long. I don't think my work will pay me sick pay so it'll be SSP.

    Thank you for the advice! I definitely need the surgery as my wrist is getting worse, it's just the worry about time off work and money that's making me doubt it.


    Sophie X

  • MoWW
    MoWW Member Posts: 73

    Hi @Sophie, i sent you some information on your concerns about surgery and work earlier. However I thought you may be interested in some of our services?

    Our Arthritis Tracker app helps thousands of young people (

    Young people | Living with arthritis, managing pain (

    We offer services for young people, check out in your area to link in with them.



  • Sophie98
    Sophie98 Member Posts: 29

    Thank you, I'll check them out!

  • stickywicket
    stickywicket Member Posts: 27,293

    Sophie, please do have that chat with your surgeon. It's very difficult to only use one hand (believe me, I've tried it on several occasions). One or two people have messed up hand ops by trying too much too soon. But, if you check it out with your surgeon I'm sure he'll know better than I.

  • Sophie98
    Sophie98 Member Posts: 29

    Thank you for the advice!

    I definitely don't want to over do it but I'm hoping to get back to work a bit earlier though.


    Sophie X