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Dupuytrens Contracture Treatment | Dupuytren Contracture Dublin, Ireland

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Treatment For Dupuytren Contracture In Dublin Ireland

Dupuytren’s Contracture is a condition that affects the hands, making them bent and unable to fully straighten. It can be very painful and make everyday tasks difficult.

If you are suffering from Dupuytren’s Contracture, then a combination of physical therapy and shockwave therapy may be the right treatment for you. Our hands are so important to how we function and carry our day-to-day lives – that is why it is important to find effective management options for conditions that affect our hands.

Dublin Physical & Chiropractic offers physical therapy treatments specifically designed to help relieve the symptoms of Dupuytren’s Contracture.

people holding hands dublin ireland

What Is Dupuytren’s Contracture? 

Dupuytren’s Contracture or what is sometimes called ‘palmar fibromatosis’ or ‘Vikings Disease’ is a condition characterized by the formulation of a fibrous nodule or lump, or tight cord or band in the ‘palmar fascia’ (a connection tissue sheath) on the palm of the hand, that you can feel just under the skin.

It commonly occurs at the base of the fourth and fifth fingers. It can also occur on both hands, however, that is less common.

The formation of this fibrous lump or band progressively pulls the fingers into a flexed or bent position, shortening the tissue, making day-to-day tasks, like gripping, putting on gloves, and holding things increasingly difficult.

Some people also experience pain with Dupuytren’s contracture. Over several months to years, it can become increasingly difficult to straighten the fingers, making the later stages of Dupuytren’s contracture quite debilitating.

woman keeping on gloves dublin ireland

What Causes It? 

The exact cause is unknown however the development of the Dupuytren’s is linked to the following risk factors:

  • Male.
  • Over 50 years of age.
  • Of Northern European descent (hence the nickname for Dupuytren’s being the ‘Viking Disease’ or Çeltic Hand’, it is believed many Vikings had the disease and passed it on to future generations.)
  • Genetics, a family history of the condition.
  • History of inflammation or injury to stimulate new tissue growth on the base of the fourth or fifth finger.
  • Diabetes.
  • Alcoholism.
  • Smoking.
  • Hypercholesterolaemia.
  • HIV.

How Dupuytren’s Contracture Got Its Name

The name ‘Dupuytren’ comes from the French surgeon Baron Guillaume Dupuytren, who presented a well-known talk on the retracted or bent fingers in 1831. However, it was a Swiss doctor, of the name Felix Platter, who first described Dupuytren’s contracture, in the 1600s.

man with dupuytren contracture

What Are The Signs & Symptoms?

The symptoms of Dupuytren’s Contracture ( or the Viking’s Disease of the Celtic Hand) include the following, however, reduced range of motion or available movement of the fingers is the most is commonly the most limiting symptom.

  • Tight strands or cords of fibrous tissue and/or hard nodule or lump on the palm of the hand.
  • These nodules are usually not painful, but pain can occur in day-to-day tasks that require the use of the hand.
  • The tight strands or cords usually connect the fourth or fifth fingers (ring finger and pinky finger) to the palm.
  • Dupuytren’s contracture is a chronic progressive condition.
  • Tight strands or cords progressively get tighter, making it difficult to straighten the fingers.
  • Reduced sensation in the fingers can occur due to the nerves of the hand on fingers becoming compressed.

How Is It Diagnosed?

Generally, simple observation and palpation of the hand and fingers are enough to diagnose the condition, specific tests or imaging is rarely recommended.

Your GP or physical therapist will compare both hands, they look at your range of motion, see if you can straighten your fingers, and they may measure your grip strength. They may also ask if it has worsened in recent months or years.

physiotherapy dupuytren's contracture

Treatment Options 

There are various treatment options offered to try and treat Dupuytren’s contracture, from physical therapy to injections to surgery. However, at Dublin Physical & Chiropractic we offer something much less invasive to release those tight contractures and broke up those nodules.

Here are some of the medical treatment options for Dupuytren’s Contractures, many with high reoccurrence rates.

  • Fasciotomy.
  • Regional Fasciectomy.
  • Dermofascietomy.
  • Needle Aponeurotomy.
  • Collagenase Injections.

How We Manage Dupuytren’s Contracture In Dublin, Ireland

At Dublin Physical & Chiropractic we use a combination of radial shockwave therapy (or pressure wave) and physical therapy to break down the tight bands and nodules in the palmar fascia and increase the range of motion of the fingers to improve the quality of life of our clients.

Shockwave Therapy 

Shockwave therapy uses energy in the form of sound waves to cause an inflammatory response in the area being treated.

This inflammatory response leads to cellular regeneration, new blood vessels, a reduction in stiffness and tightness, and the breakdown of fibrous tissue, like in the case of Dupuytren’s Contracture.

Shockwave therapy was been found to be an effective treatment for treating chronic conditions like Achilles Tendinopathy and calcific shoulder tendinopathy.

It is common to experience some mild pain for 2-3 days following shockwave therapy, however, that is completely normal and a sign that your body is responding to the treatment and beginning the healing process.

Benefits Of Shockwave Therapy

  • Each session only lasts 5-10 minutes.
  • It is non-invasive.
  • There are no painful injections or surgical inventions involved.
  • It promotes the body’s natural healing processes to build new, healthy cells.
  • It can improve range of motion/reduce tightness/stiffness.
  • It can reduce pain.
  • There is no downtime afterward.
  • There is no medication involved.

Visit us in Dun Laoghaire, Dublin Ireland

Our physical therapy & other services extend throughout Dun Laoghaire-Rathdown including Blackrock, Cherrywood, Stillorgan, Rathfarnham, Shankill, Cabinteely, Foxrock, Clonskeagh, and Killiney.

Our office is located just outside of the center of Dun Laoghaire and is between Deansgrange and Monkstown. You can find our building entrance on Lower Mounttown Road, across from Woodland Park. We are a 30-second walk from Dublin Bus stop 2031 which is outside of Mccormick’s Pub.

Physical Therapy 

All the experts, that have been using shockwaves for many years, say that shockwave therapy works best with exercise therapy. There is no ‘one thing‘, but it is a combination of the different treatment options that achieve the best outcomes.

That is why we combine shockwave therapy with specific stretches and strengthening exercises for the fingers, wrist, forearm, and shoulder for Dupuytren’s Contracture.

You may have heard of the ‘prayer stretch’ – that is a popular one amongst our physical therapists.

For Dupuytren’s Contracture, we generally recommend 6-8 weekly sessions (just an average, however, everyone is different) for physical therapy and shockwave therapy, and review the client’s progress in terms of range of motion, functional ability, and quality of life at three or four weeks, and after 6 to 8 weeks.

physiotherapy for dupuytren's contracture

Book An Appointment Today In Dublin, Ireland 

We’re Dublin Physical & Chiropractic and we have over 30 years of combined excellence helping people just like you feel better. Our highly innovative technology and professional care will get you back on your feet again quickly. We also offer free parking.

Request an appointment today by clicking the link below or calling us at (01) 254 4800. You won’t regret it!

References

[1] https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7302658/

[2] https://www.physiocheck.co.uk/condition/94/dupuytrens-contracture

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    by | Jan 25, 2022

    <a href="https://drlawrencewoods.com" target="_blank">Dr Lawrence Woods</a>

    Dr Lawrence Woods

    Chiropractor

    My goal is to help people get out and stay out of pain. With 30 years of spinal healthcare experience as a chiropractor, I learned the value of living pain free for a happy and healthy life. I have a Chiropractic Degree from Life Chiropractic College West and am NBCE Physiotherapy certified.
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