With more seriously displaced radial head fractures, surgery may be prescribed to help stabilize the fracture or to possibly excise or replace the radial head. Several factors help determine which type of treatment is appropriate, including the number of bone fragments, possible injury to other ligaments or bones around the elbow, and the relative activity level of the patient.
If it is determined that the radial head fracture needs to be excised, an implant may be put in its place to ensure elbow stability. This would be necessary if the other bones or ligaments have been damaged. The removal of the radial head in an isolated radial head injury may be well tolerated.