Treating Dupuytren’s ContractureInformation about the various treatments for Dupuytren’s Contracture
Dupuytren’s Contracture Treatment
How is Dupuytren’s Contracture Treated?
Fortunately there has been a lot of progress in the treatment of Dupuytren’s Contracture since Baron Guillaume Dupuytren first successfully treated the condition in 1832 by slicing open a patient’s hand in front of an audience, without using anaesthetic.
There are essentially two non-surgical treatment options for those suffering from the condition:
Radiation Therapy can delay or even prevent the need for surgery. It involves aiming controlled doses of radiation – usually in the form of X-rays – at the nodules within the hand. It is not known precisely how this works, but it appears to affect the development and growth rate of the Fibroplast cells in the hand which are responsible for producing and releasing collagen; the protein that forms the main part of the body’s connective tissue. Radiation Therapy is not suitable for everyone who suffers from the condition, and as with any radiation, comes with several risk factors.
Collagenase Clostridium Histolyticum is a medicine that can be injected into the cords within the palm of the hand. It contains specific proteins that can weaken the cords, enabling them to be broken or stretched and thus releasing the tension within the hand. In most cases the patient is sent home for 24 hours after the injection, giving time for the proteins to have their effect on the cords. Upon returning to the doctors after the drug has its time to work, the doctor will bend and stretch out the affected finger and this should increase the range of movement within the finger or hand.
As alternatives to the non-surgical treatments, there are essentially three different options:
A Needle Fasciotomy involves a fine blade or needle being inserted into the fibrous bands (cords) within the finger or palm of the affected hand. This can help to weaken the cords and thus increase the mobility of the finger or hand. While its success rate is relatively high and the risk of complications is low, it may not be the most effective long-term treatment for the condition.
An Open Fasciotomy might be used when the condition is more serious. It is similar to a needle fasciotomy but involves the surgeon opening up the hand or finger to carry out the procedure.
Fasciectomy involves the removal of the thickened connective tissue, normally under a general anaesthetic. It is a more invasive procedure than the fasciotomy and will often involve a skin graft to seal the wound. While it is a more complicated operation with higher risks, the long-term results of a fasciectomy are generally better than other surgical treatments.
Claiming For Your Dupuytren’s Contracture
Free Legal Advice
If you are unsure whether you have a claim for Dupuytren’s Contracture as a consequence of your work environment, then call our personal injury claims team for free for no obligation advice on making a claim. They will ask you some simple questions about your condition, talk to you about what’s happened and can tell you if you have a viable claim for compensation or not. Call us 24/7 on 0800 122 3130.
Paul Newman, Frank Sinatra, Margaret Thatcher, Ronald Reagan, David Gower, Graham Gooch, Bill Nighy, and even the author J.M. Barrie have all suffered from the condition over the years. It is rumoured that J.M. Barrie, author of the legendary Peter Pan, used his own...