Dupuytren’s Contracture is a condition that affects one or more fingers of the hand and is caused by the development of thick and fibrous connection tissue that lies under the skin of the palm. The condition is evident in the way the affected finger or fingers appear deformed, typically in a fixed forward curvature.
Once the knots of tissue that form under the skin develop into a thick cord, one or more fingers are pulled into a bent position. Unfortunately, the affected fingers cannot be straightened completely, which can make everyday activities difficult to do. Simple things such as shaking hands with someone or putting on gloves tend to be more complicated.
Symptoms of Dupuytren’s Contracture
Early symptoms of Dupuytren’s Contracture are usually not detectable since the condition is known to progress slowly for a number of years. In rare cases, the condition can develop over a span of weeks or months. Some people may see the condition worsen steadily, whereas some people may notice symptoms start and suddenly stop.
These are some common signs that you may be developing Dupuytren’s Contracture:
- Thickening of the skin on the palm of your hand
- Appearance of puckered or dimpled skin on the palm of your hand
- Formation of a firm lump of tissue on your palm
- Formation of cords of tissue under the skin on your palm, which may extend up to your fingers
- Fingers pulled towards your palm, which may vary in severity
There are a number of factors that are known to increase a person’s risk of developing Dupuytren’s Contracture, including:
- Age. The condition affects more people over the age of 50.
- Sex. Men are more likely to develop the condition and tend to have more severe contractures than women.
- Ancestry. People of Northern European descent are more susceptible to developing the condition than any other race.
- Family history. If one ore more people in your family have developed Dupuytren’s Contracture, you are at a very high risk of developing the condition as well.
- Tobacco use. Smoking is believed to increase the risk of developing the condition, which is associated with the microscopic changes within blood vessels caused by smoking.
- Alcohol consumption. Alcohol use is also associated with the development of Dupuytren’s Contracture. However, some may believe this is linked to the fact that most people of Northern European descent, who are as higher risk for the condition, also tend to have higher rates of alcohol consumption in general.
- Diabetes. People with diabetes are reported to have a higher risk of the condition.
Contact an Expert Hand Surgeon in Phoenix
If you think that you may be at risk for Dupuytren’s Contracture, schedule a consultation with Dr. Michael Fitzmaurice from Fitzmaurice Hand Institute today. Dr. Fitzmaurice aims to provide the highest standard of care for all his patients and has become a leader in minimally invasive hand surgery. Whether you are experiencing the discomfort from Dupuytren’s Contracture or any other condition, Dr. Fitzmaurice and his team have many years of experience treating complicated hand conditions. Call (480) 526-5106 today to schedule an initial consultation.
The EndoTech® endoscopic release of Dupuytren’s tissue is a cutting edge treatment only available at the Fitzmaurice hand institute.
Next, read about Carpal Tunnel Syndrome.