If these treatments fail, an elbow replacement may be necessary. However, this surgery has a far lower success rate than hip or knee replacement. The elbow is a complicated hinge joint, and the bones into which artificial joint components must be inserted are smaller than those of the hip or knee. In particular, elbow replacement requires a rod to be inserted in the ulna, a small bone in the lower arm that is prone to osteolysis (dissolving).
Read about the research HSS surgeons and biomechanical engineers are doing to improve elbow replacement and make it a more viable option for patients.