Radial aplasia is a congenital defect which affects the formation of the radius bone in the arm. The radius is the lateral bone which connects to the wrist via articulation with the carpal bones. A child born with this condition has either a short or absent radius bone in one or both of his or her arm(s). Radial aplasia also results in the thumb being either partly formed or completely absent from the hand. Radial aplasia is connected with the condition VACTERL association. The cause for radial aplasia in unknown, but it widely believed to occur within the first ten weeks of gestation.