Dupuytren’s Contracture

Hand and Microsurgery Associates

Hand Surgery & Orthopedic Surgery located in Columbus, OH
Dupuytren’s contracture makes the ring and small fingers of one or both hands curl in toward your palm, and can make it hard to use your hand normally. If you have this condition, the team of board-certified hand surgeons and hand therapy specialists at Hand and Microsurgery Associates in Columbus, Ohio, can help. They provide expert treatment for Dupuytren’s contracture, including physical therapy, steroid injections, and minimally invasive surgery. Call Hand and Microsurgery Associates today for more information or to schedule a consultation.

Dupuytren’s Contracture Q & A

What is Dupuytren’s contracture?
Dupuytren’s contracture is a hand disorder in which the tissues in your palm thicken, making your fingers curl over toward the palm.

It’s not known what causes Dupuytren’s contracture. Some people believe that there’s a link between previous hand injuries or using your hand in a specific way (such as repetitive use at work) and later development of Dupuytren’s contracture.

Dupuytren’s contracture affects men more than women. Rates are also higher in people who are over 40 or of northern European descent.

What are the symptoms of Dupuytren’s contracture?
Dupuytren’s contracture causes pits, cords (thick lines), and nodules (bumps) to form in your palm. The bumps are typically firm to touch and stuck to your skin. The cords can run from your palm up into your fingers.

Dupuytren’s contracture usually affects the ring and small finger. Some people develop the condition in both hands. In most cases, Dupuytren’s contracture isn’t painful, although it can cause discomfort in some people.

The first sign that you’re developing Dupuytren’s contracture is having problems placing your hand flat. As your fingers start to bend in toward your palm, it becomes more and more awkward to use your hand. You might find, for instance, that washing your hands or simply putting them in your pockets is increasingly difficult.

Dupuytren’s contracture affects people differently, so while some might just have small cords and nodules, others will have completely bent fingers. The earlier you develop Dupuytren’s contracture, the more severe it’s likely to be.

How is Dupuytren’s contracture treated?
If you only have it mildly and you can still use your hand without difficulty, you might not need treatment for Dupuytren’s contracture. The Hand and Microsurgery Associates team can monitor your condition in case the symptoms start worsening.

If you’re more severely affected by Dupuytren’s contracture, you might benefit from hand therapy, custom splinting, steroid injections, or collagenase injections (Xiaflex®). Collagenase works by breaking up the proteins in the cords.

Some patients might require a needle aponeurotomy, which involves using a needle to cut and separate the affected tissues in your palm.

Alternatively, the Hand and Microsurgery Associates team can surgically divide the affected tissues (fasciotomy) or remove them altogether (fasciectomy). To find the best treatment when you have Dupuytren’s contracture, call and make an appointment today.