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By Brittany Ferri March 17, 2021

Dupuytren's Contracture is one of the most common connective tissue diseases. And if you ask how many people have Dupuytren's Contracture In the United States, the answer is about 5% of the population. Dupuytren's Contracture is most common in caucasian males, particularly those of Northern European descent. This explains why Dupuytren's Contracture is sometimes referred to as “Viking’s Disease.” 

What Is Dupuytren's Contracture?

This condition causes an abnormal thickening of the connective tissue on the palm of the hand. This tissue is called fascia. One of the main signs of Dupuytren's Syndrome is nodules appearing on the palm. The nodules are often painless lumps, but they may be tender for some people. These nodules are not typically harmful; the tissue is the main concern, since it draws the fingers inward and makes them appear clenched.

This is not only visually noticeable, but the lack of finger extension prevents people from doing day-to-day activities such as cooking, shaving, and more. 

Who Gets Dupuytren's Contracture?

Dupuytren's Contracture is a hereditary disease that mostly affects caucasian males. Age also seems to play a part in the development of Dupuytren's Contracture, as this condition is far more common in people over fifty. Other factors that may contribute to Dupuytren's Contracture are seizure medications, diabetes, or a generally unhealthy lifestyle.

It's difficult to trace unhealthy lifestyle choices directly to all of the negative health outcomes that they cause. But medical professionals are certain that diet and exercise play an important role in the development of many diseases. This is even the case for genetic conditions like Dupuytren's Contracture.

What Can I Expect With Dupuytren's Contracture?

Because early Dupuytren's presents with mild symptoms, some people make the mistake of ignoring them or simply dealing with it. Instead, they should look into ways to manage the disease through stretching, finger strengthening exercises, and all-naturalDupuytren's Contracture cream.

With regular stretching and application of Dupuytren's Contracture cream, most people see a reduction in the symptoms of Dupuytren's Contracture. These symptoms include:

  • Fingers pulled forward:Dupuytren's Contracture can pull your fingers, especially your index finger, in toward your palm. This is one of the most common characteristics of Dupuytren's Contracture along with fingers that are bent out of place and can't lay flat on a table. This happens when thickened connective tissue pulls the fingers out of place.
  • Nodules: When nodules begin to form under the skin, this is when many people start to pay attention. If this sounds like you, don’t worry. You can still eliminate the nodules through natural means or, if necessary, via surgery. Although the nodules are often painless, they can become a problem as they start to impact the motion in your fingers.
  • Poor range of motion: Having decreased range of motion in the fingers is another common sign of Dupuytren's Contracture. This can be seen in one or more fingers and will usually occur on both hands (in rare cases, the feet are also impacted). Any loss of motion should always be monitored closely, as this can point toward a number of hand-related issues.
  • Decreased hand function: The biggest adverse effect of Dupuytren's is general dysfunction of the hand. If you are having trouble opening and closing your fingers or performing daily tasks that used to be easy for you, consult your physician. It is difficult to predict how incapacitating hand issues can be. Some people might think that bent fingers aren't a problem, but even a minor case of Dupuytren's can majorly impact quality of life. Dupuytren's Contracture gets worse if it's untreated, so this isn't something to ignore. The sooner you are diagnosed, the sooner you can begin using naturalDupuytren's Contracture cream. Consistent use of this cream once or twice a day along with stretching, massaging, and strengthening can prove helpful in managing this disorder.

You can perform a simple test at home to see if you may have Dupuytren's Contracture. Try laying your hand flat on a table with your palm facing down. If you cannot painlessly flatten your fingers in this manner, you should consult your physician because you may have Dupuytren's Contracture.

Dupuytren's Contracture is usually fairly easy to diagnose. Your physician will look at your palm for nodules and measure the flexibility and rotation of your fingers. If your doctor finds nodules, they will usually note their size to determine if they get bigger over time. This helps determine if treatment is working.

What Happens If You Have Dupuytren's Contracture?

The recommendations that your doctor gives you will depend on a variety of factors including your age, how you respond to certain medications, and the severity of your case. There are six common and effective methods of treatment for Dupuytren's Contracture:

  • Natural cream: Using a naturalDupuytren's Contracture cream is often the first line of defense. Most doctors try to avoid surgery unless absolutely necessary, since it's ideal to prevent going under the knife unless it's the best option. Most cases of Dupuytren's Contracture can be corrected with a natural cream, daily stretching, and finger strengthening. These methods work because the connective tissue in your hands is flexible enough to be lengthened, strengthened, and regain its prior form. If these non-invasive methods do not work, some people turn to steroids, surgery, or pursue other options.
  • Steroid shot: Steroids can reduce pain in the nodules on the palm. Many people report little to no pain when their palm develops nodules. But for those who develop discomfort, steroids usually help. While effective, steroids are not a good long-term option because they are costly and can result in negative side effects.
  • Needle aponeurotomy: This minimally-invasive procedure involves using a needle to make tiny holes in the thickened tissue. This allows doctors to straighten the fingers and relieve some of the deformities caused by Dupuytren's Contracture.
  • Radiation: If you catch Dupuytren's early, low-grade radiation is a viable approach. While radiation may not get rid of large nodules, it can certainly help reduce and loosen smaller bumps. Ask your doctor if radiation is a possibility for your case of Dupuytren's Contracture.
  • Surgery: This is the most common treatment for advanced cases of Dupuytren's. While there are certainly cases when surgery is the best choice, more and more individuals with this condition are turning to non-invasive procedures like natural creams.

Conclusion

As common as Dupuytren's Contracture is, this condition is still not widely known. Dupuytren's Contracture is a genetic disease that mainly affects males of Northern European ancestry. You may have Dupuytren's Contracture if you experience pain in the palm of your hand or have nodules on your palm. These nodules are thickened connective tissue that can be fixed via a number of effective methods, including a naturalDupuytren's Contracture cream or steroid shots. In more serious cases, you may need to resort to surgery, a needle aponeurotomy, or radiation treatment. 

Brittany Ferri
Brittany Ferri

Brittany is a registered and licensed occupational therapist who has 6 years of clinical experience treating conditions such as Dupuytren's, arthritis, carpal tunnel, and more. She is passionate about educating others about their health.


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