Dupuytren’s Disease Specialist in Houston, TX
Are you experiencing symptoms of Dupuytren’s disease? The highly trained hand and wrist specialists at Hand Surgery Specialists of Texas are here to help, offering expert diagnosis and Dupuytren’s disease treatment. Call (713) 322-0054 to schedule an appointment at one of our offices in Houston, Baytown, or Katy, Texas.
Understanding Dupuytren’s Disease
Dupuytren’s disease, also known as Dupuytren’s contracture, is a collagen disorder predominantly affecting individuals of Northern European descent, accounting for around 5% of this population. This condition is characterized by the abnormal thickening and nodularity of the tissue beneath the palm’s skin, extending into the fingers, primarily affecting the ring and little fingers. It is most common in males over 40, who constitute 75% of the patients.
This disease can lead to Dupuytren’s contracture, where firm pits, nodules, and cords cause the fingers to bend into the palm, sometimes accompanied by thickening on top of the knuckles.
Causes of Dupuytren’s Disease
The exact cause of Dupuytren’s disease is unclear, but it involves the abnormal production of thick type III collagen in place of the normal type I collagen in the palm. This condition is associated with a variety of factors including:
- Smoking and excessive alcohol intake
- Diseases such as diabetes
- High count of androgen receptors in the thickened fascia in men
There is no evidence that hand injuries or repetitive behaviors increase the risk of developing Dupuytren’s disease. However, it is often seen in individuals who are over 50, use tobacco products, frequently consume alcohol, are of Northern European descent, or have diabetes.
Signs & Symptoms of Dupuytren’s Disease
Dupuytren’s disease presents with firm lumps and pits within the palm. Thick cords sometimes develop, stretching from the palm into one or more fingers, generally the ring and little fingers, causing bending of the fingers. In many cases, both hands are affected, though it can sometimes just be one.
Though initial lumps may be uncomfortable, Dupuytren’s disease is not typically painful. Early presentations may be noticed because it is challenging to place a hand flat on an even surface, such as a table, or putting hands into pockets. Some patients progress dramatically, and some only ever grow minimal lumps or cords. It’s generally thought that the earlier the age of onset with Dupuytren’s disease, the more severe the disease will progress.
Diagnosis & Treatment of Dupuytren’s Disease
Diagnosing Dupuytren’s disease involves a careful evaluation of your symptoms and health history. Our specialists will recommend treatment based on the stage and pattern of the disease and the joints involved. While it cannot be cured, treatment can help straighten affected fingers and alleviate symptoms.
Treatment options include:
- Collagenase: An injectable medication used to dissolve the nodule and some of the thickened tissues.
- Needle Aponevrotomy: A treatment involving fine needles to break apart thickened tissues, performed under a topical anesthetic.
- Direct Injections: Including corticosteroids to reduce swelling and inflammation, and FDA-approved enzyme injections to break apart the fibrous cords associated with Dupuytren’s contracture.
- Splinting: A method involving a splint worn regularly to force the fingers to extend fully, used with specialist guidance to avoid further injury.
- Surgical Treatment: Recommended for severe cases, providing more immediate and long-lasting relief from finger contractions.
Recovery generally takes about a week, with splinting advised for at least three months, potentially only at night. Physical therapy is rarely required.
Schedule an Appointment With A Dupuytren’s Disease Doctor
To learn more about Dupuytren’s disease causes and treatment options, call (713) 322-0054 to schedule a consultation with our experienced Dupuytren’s disease doctor at Hand Surgery Specialists of Texas today!