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By Brittany Ferri May 03, 2020

We have talked about a lot of things in the past including tips on how to reduce the symptoms of Dupuytren's and take care of your health during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. However, one question that we have not touched upon much is Dupuytren's contracture surgery.

Most of our articles emphasize how there are not many Dupuytren's contracture treatment options. Since not much is not known about the disease, we do not yet have an entirely effective option to treat it. Dupuytren's contracture surgery does exist, but very few people opt for this method as it is not always recommended by doctors nor is it a good option for everyone's medical needs, work life, and personal preferences. In this article, we’ll talk about why surgery isn’t the best option to treat Dupuytren's contracture. 

Surgery Is Costly

While exact costs vary based on where someone lives, Dupuytren's contracture surgery is generally thought of as very expensive and can exceed $4,000 in most cases. Plus, since insurance does not cover treatment for this debilitating condition, people may have a lot of difficulty covering the cost out of their own money. This is why it is best to avoid surgery unless absolutely necessary, and look into other options. Base fees for the surgery itself are typically through the roof, and this does not even include the possibility of other charges that may occur. For example, some people may need to stay in the hospital overnight if their case is especially severe or if they have other medical conditions that require additional monitoring.

Surgery Is Invasive

If you speak to a surgeon about the procedure, they will be able to explain in detail how it is performed, the recovery time it requires, and what you can expect. Most surgeries such as this can be completed on an outpatient basis, meaning you will go home on the same day without being admitted to a hospital. Clinics most often use a form of anesthesia, either local or generalized, to numb the area and minimize your pain and discomfort. However, the fact remains that surgery of any kind requires incisions (often several that are located in painful spots) that can result in long-term pain and a lengthy recovery time. Individuals will likely need medications for several weeks following any surgery such as this one in order to reduce their pain, relieve swelling, and generally assist with the healing process.

Surgery Doesn't Offer Any Guarantees

As with most surgeries and procedures, both complex and simple in nature, there is rarely a guarantee that someone's symptoms will go away completely or even improve at all. Dupuytren's contract surgery may not be able to correct the condition or reverse symptoms as it often claims to do. Even if you do experience an improvement in symptoms or they go away entirely following the surgery, there is always the risk of relapse. This means that all the pain you went through, recovery time you needed, and money you spent will have been for nothing.

Surgery Has a Longer Timeline

Surgery of any kind will require some down-time to allow for the healing process. Incisions will usually be healed within around a month. However, this may take even longer if you have other medical conditions that prolong wound healing, including diabetes or other circulatory concerns. Apart from the incisions, it can take as long as three months for someone to regain the motion and flexibility that they want in their hand. Although someone is not entirely incapacitated during this time, the recovery period does prevent people from going back to work or performing daily activities like cleaning or getting dressed.

Surgery is Risky

Any procedure that requires doctors to make an incision in the skin will place someone at risk for infection. While the chances of this happening greatly decrease if you follow the aftercare instructions your surgeon gave you and clean your incision as indicated, infections may still occur due to the body's response. It is important to discuss possible risks with your surgeon so that you are fully aware of what may or may not happen after your surgery.

Surgery may not be the best option to treat your case of Dupuytren's contracture. As we've mentioned, it's usually only recommended for severe cases and, even then, there are many risks and the possibility that it won't help your symptoms.

We suggest that you look for alternative, low-cost, and risk-free treatment options such as our homeopathic Dupuytren's contracture cream. Customers have reported significant relief after previously having their hands lock up each night due to intense pain.

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.