Dupuytren's Contracture

There are many conditions in the hand that can cause discomfort and restrict your ability to carry out everyday functions. One of these conditions is Dupuytren’s contracture, a condition that affects the fingers and doesn’t allow them to open completely.

Usually Dupuytren’s becomes noticeable in people starting in their 40s to 60s, usually developes slowly over many years leading up to being noticed and causing problems for everyday life. It is rarely painful and more often an annoyance when trying to grip objects and you are not able to.

What Is Dupuytren's?

Within your hand there are many soft tissues like tendons, muscles, ligaments, and fascia. The fascia over time can develop an abnormal thickening, making the soft tissues under the skin stiff. This thickening and stiffness is Dupuytren’s contracture.

Common symptoms are hard cord-like structures or knots and nodules in the hand. When these symptoms occur it can make it hard or impossible to extend the hand and fingers. This can lead to you not being able to carry out normal everyday functions like picking up keys and putting your hand in your pocket.

There are certain fingers that are more prone to having Dupuytren’s contracture. Usually it affects the small pinky finger, the ring finger, and sometimes the middle finger. Along with cord-like structures there can be nodules throughout the palm and this can affect mobility in multiple fingers at once.

Who Can Get Dupuytren's?

Dupuytren’s contracture is a fairly rare disease that slowly progresses over years and even decades. Usually in the 40’s to 60’s is when you would first notice the symptoms.

Genetics & Dupuytrens

Dupuytren’s is more common in males than females and is a genetic disease. If you have it is it probable it was passed down to you. Your genetic makeup can make you more prone to developing Dupuytren’s as you age.

Treatments

There are three treatment options for those with Dupuytren’s. First, it is important to discuss with your care provider which option is best. Choosing the best treatment option can be based on how the disease has developed, recovery time, what your long term goals are, and if your everyday functions are being affected.

Treatment Options:

  • Enzyme injection
  • Needle aponeurotomy
  • Surgery

Make an Appointment with Our Orthopedic Specialists

You might not think about how important your wrists and hands are to daily life—until they are hurt or injured. If you have been taking care of your wrist or hand pain at home and the symptoms are still present after seven to 10 days, it may be time to see one of our orthopedic doctors.

Referrals are welcome but not necessary. You can make an appointment with an orthopedic doctor by calling 801-213-4263 or requesting an appointment online.

When to See a Doctor for Hand or Wrist Pain