Dupuytrens Contracture

Dupuytren’s contracture affects a layer of tissue that lies under the skin of your palm called the palmar fascia. Knots of tissue form under the skin, eventually forming a thick cord that can deform one or more of your fingers making it impossible to straighten those fingers. Though the changes are usually gradual, patients who have the familial variant have a more early onset, aggressive form of the disease that can involve more fingers and also other areas of the body such as the feet. A number of treatments are available to treat the progression of Dupuytrens contracture. While non-surgical methods are available, with some good early results, the mainstay of treatment is the excision of the affected tissue. Dependent on how long the disease has been present, its aggressiveness and the pre-operative state of the joints in the affected digit, surgery can return the finger to almost a full range of motion.

Technique
Recovery
Risks

Technique

Recovery

The procedure is done under general anaesthetic, as a day-only procedure.

After the surgery your hand will be bandaged and placed in a splint. You will be given a sling on discharge to elevate the hand and help reduce swelling and pain. You may need to wear your splint for up to three months after the procedure. Patients will also have ongoing hand therapy to improve function and prevent recurrence.

Risks

If you require surgery for Dupuytren’s disease, then it is important that you are informed of the potential risks, complications and side effects of this surgery.

While all care is taken to minimise or totally avoid these complications and side effects, complications may and do occur despite the best medical care. It is important that you carefully read and understand the risk factors and they will be discussed in more detail when you have your consultation with your surgeon.

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