Dupuytren's Contracture – Frisco, TX
Dupuytren's Contracture or Dupuytren's Disease is a medical condition in which the elastic tissue (fascia) that lies beneath the skin of palm and fingers becomes unusually thick. The fascia comprises of cords that assist in keeping the fingers straight. However, in Dupuytren's Contracture, these cords become abnormally tight thereby causing the fingers to curl inwards. This condition of the hand generally progresses slowly over a period of many years and can affect one or both hands.

Although Dupuytren's Contracture is not a life-threatening condition, it can become disabling over a period of time. Consult an expert wrist surgeon to know what treatment options are best suitable for you.

Causes

  • Patients with diabetes or seizure disorders are at a higher risk
  • Consumption of too much alcohol also increases the probability
  • The condition can be inherited
  • Smoking is another major risk factor
  • Males over the age of 50 have a higher probability of developing the condition

Symptoms

  • Lumps in the skin beneath the palm
  • Difficulty in straightening fingers
  • Inability to pick large objects or perform day-to-day activities
  • Curling of fingers as the disease progresses
  • Difficulty in placing the hand flat on table
  • Clenched appearance of fourth and fifth fingers

Diagnosis

  • The wrist surgeon will carefully scrutinize the patient’s fingers, wrists and hands
  • The palm areas are checked to look for lumps
  • The patient is asked to lay his hand flat on a table
  • Other hand tests are done to in order to check the range of motion of fingers and hand

Treatment

Although there is no permanent cure for Dupuytren's Contracture, the condition requires expert opinion that includes medication or surgery depending on individual patients.

Non-surgical treatment

  • Corticosteroid injections can help in providing relief from pain caused by a tender nodule
  • Steroid injections are also useful in reducing inflammation
  • If a patient already has a contracture, enzyme injections might be given by the doctor to loosen the tight bands in the palm
  • Stretching exercises along with heat application can also provide relief to some extent
  • Ultrasound treatments are also useful in certain cases

Surgical treatment

  • Surgical treatment is necessary if a patient has significant contracture or the non-surgical treatment options fail to provide any relief
  • Surgery involves removing the scar tissue to stretch the fingers and loosen the tendons
  • Needle aponeurotomy or needle fasciotomy might also be performed by the wrist surgeon
  • The procedure involves freeing the scarred tissue by cutting it with a needle
  • Flexing the fingers post-surgery is necessary to fasten the process of recovery

Get in touch with a wrist surgeon immediately if you suspect Dupuytren’s Contracture.