Dupuytren’s Contracture Hand Finger Sioux City
Dupuytren’s contracture is a condition of the hand in which a nodule of tissue develops under the skin of the palm. Over time, this tissue nodule increases in size and prevents the finger from extending. This produces a contracture, a shortening of a joint or muscle, which prevents normal finger movements.
One theory about the origin of the condition holds that it originated with the Vikings, who passed it on to their descendants as they traveled from place to place. However, it didn’t have a name until the French surgeon Baron Guillaume Dupuytren described it in the 19th century.
Dupuytren’s contracture is not something that develops overnight: symptoms slowly appear, worsening over the course of weeks and months. Stiffness in the fingers is generally the first symptom. A small nodule might be felt in the palm of the hand, and will feel as if it is popping or clicking as fingers flex and extend. Over time the nodule grows in size and may prevent the finger from extending. Severe contractures can restrict normal movements to the extent of affecting day-to-day activities.
There no known causes of Dupuytren’s contracture. However, it has been observed to be more common among certain groups. Men are afflicted more frequently than woman; diabetics are observed to be at a higher risk; and it is more common in people aged 40 and over, people of Northern European descent, people whose family members have been affected.
Although there are no known cures for Dupuytren’s contracture, there are a few treatments that can help relieve the symptoms:
- Graston technique
- Cold laser
- Physical therapy
The Graston technique involves the use of instruments to help break down collagen fibers within the scar tissue. Since scar tissue can limit range of motion, breaking down the collagen fibers helps regain mobility. Trigger finger is often treated with the same technique, as the conditions are similar. Here at Tempe Chiropractic, we’ve proud of our specific expertise in the Graston technique, and believe it to be an effective way of regaining a normal range of motion in the hand.
Cold laser treatment involves the use of a Class IV cold laser on a specific wavelength, to help speed the healing process. Physical therapy involves stretches and strengthening exercises to increase flexibility and mobility in the fingers. To imprive movement, scar tissue and fascial adhesions are broken down with Graston, massage therapy, or ASTYM. Many mild to moderate cases of Dupuytren’s contracture can be successfully treated with a conservative course of therapy and treatment. Severe cases often require surgical intervention.