Dupuytren’s contracture is a condition which affects the hands, palms and fingers (but can also occur in the feet) and happens when the connective tissue under the skin changes in the hand, and becomes thickened forming bands and cords.
Common Dupuytren’s contracture symptoms
Over time Dupuytren’s contracture can cause one or more fingers to bend towards the palm of your hand, and the connective tissues in the palm to thicken and cause a cord-like a rope in the palm. Similar cords/bands can also extend into the fingers.
It mainly affects the ring and little fingers
You can have it in both hands at the same time
It gets slowly worse over time
At the early stages, it begins with lumps or ridges on your palms
Eventually, your fingers bend in towards the palm
It can affect other parts of your body in its more aggressive types
When should I seek treatment for Dupuytren’s contracture?
Dupuytren’s contracture has a profound effect on an individual’s ability to function. If you feel that you’re unable to straighten your fingers then you should seek advice from your GP.
What is Dupuytren’s contracture release surgery?
Surgical release is the most common form of treatment although other forms of treatment include needle release or injection. A surgical release involves removing the thickened bands, Dupuytren’s tissue (all or a part of it) and straightening the affected digit (finger). This is carried out mostly under general anaesthesia or a regional block.
Injection involves a drug called Xiapex. Xiapex is injected directly into the cord of connective tissue, dissolving it and allowing a doctor to manually straighten the affected digits. The injection does not need general or regional anaesthetic, but a local anaesthetic is applied for the manipulation.
How long does Dupuytren’s contracture repair take?
Surgical time varies according to complexity but usually lasts between 45 and 90 minutes. Recovery times for surgery can take between four and 12 weeks and for a Xiapex injection, it is typically a fortnight. Both methods are carried out as day surgery, which means you will go home on the day of your procedure and you do not need to stay in hospital overnight.
How successful is Dupuytren’s surgery and treatment?
Both surgery and injection have good results, although in some cases over time the procedure may need to be repeated. For Xiapex, 92% of patients in the UK who have had the procedure say they were ‘very satisfied’ or ‘quite satisfied’ with the results but the re-occurrence rate at five years is higher for injection compared to a surgical release.
Risks and complications of Dupuytren’s contracture operations
Risks are minimal. Potential risks are those related to all types of surgery including infection, nerve and blood vessel injury. Risks specific to this surgery are stiffness and reoccurrence.
A pre-operative assessment is our opportunity to ensure that the procedure for which you have been referred is right for you. We’ll explain your treatment to you and makes sure that you are well enough to go ahead with it. It is also your opportunity to meet the team who will care for you and to ask any questions.
We carry out all the necessary tests and examinations in one outpatient session. While this may take several hours, everything is done in one go to save frequent visits before surgery.
Ways to pay
There are 3 ways to access Dupuytren’s contracture release at Practice Plus Group:
At Practice Plus Group Hospitals we’re passionate about giving patients a positive experience and excellent clinical outcomes, with personalised care every step of the way. Whether you’re paying for yourself or using private medical insurance, with our short waiting times, unrivalled Care Quality Commission (CQC) ratings and high levels of cleanliness and infection control, we’ll make sure you’re looked after. In fact, we were the first provider to have all services rated ‘Good’ or ‘Outstanding’ by the CQC.
Went here as a nervous patient. From the moment I arrived I was made to feel welcome and looked after extremely well. Practice Plus Group staff are just amazing and caring.
by M K
Above and beyond
Big shout out to Practice Plus Group Plymouth who went above and beyond to make my day case visit today as comfortable as possible, from the day case nurses to all the theatre staff. Special mention to Carly, Cathy, Amy and Elaine(?) nothing was too much trouble!
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Best hospital I have ever been in
This is the best hospital I have ever been in. The care and efficiency were excellent. My operation was conducted by a top class surgeon and anaesthetist who made me feel relaxed and secure. The team in the Kingfisher ward were kind and professional with good bedside manners and sense of humour. There were no delays in the treatment. My stay was made as comfortable as possible and I thank everyone involved. I am now recovering well.
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Portsmouth – brilliant service
I visited [Practice Plus Group Surgical Centre, St Mary’s Portsmouth] walk-in centre today and although there were quite a few people already there I was in and out in 15 minutes. They were very efficient and helpful.