Hi - I have serious damage to my right wrist from RA (add a little OA to that as well). My wrist bones/carpals look like swiss cheese! There is some evidence that the scaphoid bone broke open. Up until then, with meds, I could still bend my wrist fairly well, now it only bends 42 degrees total (about 20 each direction). I wear a splint 24/7 and that helps keep the pain down.
Question: Any experience with wrist replacements versus fusion? I asked several doctors, including my GP, my Rheum. Dr. and 2 hand surgeons about which would be better/safer, if I decided to go for surgery. Hand surgeon #1 said, you can do either, no rush, wait a few years, but that the fusion would cause less trouble and last longer. Hand surgeon #2 said, people are happier with wrist replacement, even if they have problems with it. However, both surgeons are 3 hours away, and 'problems' would cause me to miss a whole day of work, even for just an appointment. GP said, fusion is better, any movement would contribute to inflammation, thus problems. Rheumatologist agreed.
Ironically, I scheduled the fusion with #2 hand surgeon. He kept asking me if I was sure, if I was having pain all the time (I was then but with splint it got better). So - I cancelled, and not sorry. Seemed better to wait until absolute necessity, then do fusion with #1 doctor! (had better rapport with him anyway, tho' the other guy was very nice.)