What Is Dupuytren's Disease and How Is It Treated?

What Is Dupuytren’s Disease and How Is It Treated?

Article Featured on Michigan Hand & Wrist

If you begin to notice lumps on the palm side of your hand, then you might just have Dupuytren’s disease, and if left untreated, you could possibly lose motion in your fingers. While Dupuytren’s disease is called a disease, it is actually a genetic condition. You would need to have a physical exam to get tested for it. If you think you may have this disease, you should reach out to a hand specialist to look into treatment options as soon as possible.

To fully understand Dupuytren’s disease and the available treatment options, we must first look at the causes. Although the disease is inherited through genes, you are most likely to develop it if you have a Northern European background. And as you get older, you’re more prone to developing it.

If you do develop the disease, the first symptom is finding lumps/nodules under the skin in the palm of your hand. The lump will feel very tender, but the soreness will soon fade. The nodules are formed by bands of tissue that have formed together and become inflexible. This takes away your ability to straighten your fingers because it causes them to bend toward the wrist. In addition to causing discomfort, this makes it difficult to pick up large objects or even something small from your pocket.

While symptoms of Dupuytren’s disease are pretty obvious, treatment varies depending on each individual’s situation. Most will first receive medications for the nodule tenderness. If your disease is very severe, there are surgical treatments that might be a better treatment for your hand than the medications, but many patients will most likely receive collagenase injections. It is a fairly new treatment, but the success rate has been very high. The injection dissolves the disease’s scar tissue because the proteins contained in the injection will weaken the cords. After each injection, you might have common side effects, such as swelling, itching, and bruising, but you will notice a lot of improvement in your finger mobility.

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