The radial collateral ligament (RCL) goes between the radial bone in the forearm and the capitate bone at the base of the thumb. In a small number of cases, pain at the base of the thumb persists after surgery. However, most patients are pain free and symptom free after this operation to repair the ligament.
Other residual symptoms can include a mild loss of strength. This involves pinching objects or pushing with the thumb. Some patients report aching after constant, heavy activity.