Founded in 1856, St John & St Elizabeth Hospital is one of the UK’s largest independent charitable hospitals. Our commitment to our patients is in the quality of our care, the range of our services and the quality of our consultants and staff.
St John & St Elizabeth Hospital is renowned for its highly specialised clinics that provide exemplary care for patients. Our expert Consultants cover the full range of specialties and are able to treat almost any medical condition.
Dupuytren’s contracture is a condition when an abnormal thickening of connective tissue causes one or more fingers bend in towards the palm of your hand. There’s no cure, but a number of treatments are available to significantly lessen tension and promote hand movement.
This progressive condition causes an abnormal thickening of the connective tissue (palmar fascia) that holds the skin firmly to tendons and bones.
The exact cause is unknown but there is evidence of a genetic link so it can run in families. Other factors such as diabetes, smoking, and medications may have an influence.
Most cases occur from 50-years-old and there is no cure.
The skin and fingers become tightened and one or more fingers slowly bend towards the palm of the hand. Nodules are formed under the skin of the hand and they can extend to form cords of tissue. You may also notice unusual dimples on your palm and a thickening and tenderness of the skin around the palm.
Bands of contracted tissue can form in the hand over months or years making it difficult to straighten the fingers. Over time they may be pulled into a permanently bent position.
A GP will be able to spot the nodules in the hand but the condition affects people differently so it is important to understand the impact from a mild to major deformity. Consultants will advise on the choice of medication or procedure.
Most cases are mild and no treatment is required. Non-surgical radiation therapy and injections with collagenase work to weaken the cord structures and alleviate symptoms
A minor day surgery procedure – needle fasciotomy – can be used to manipulate and weaken the contracted cords using the point of a needle.
In more advanced cases, surgical techniques can be used to restore hand function. The two main approaches are open fasciotomy, where the shortened connective tissue is cut to relieve tension or a fasciotomy were the tissue is removed. Surgery may not always successfully remove the contracture but it will significantly lessen the tension and promote hand movement.
Hand & Wrist Clinic
What we treat Our surgeons are trained in the surgical and medical treatment...
Our Hospital is renowned for providing exemplary levels of care across more than 90 services. From orthopaedics, to urology, our private GP practice and Urgent Care Clinic, our services are led by some of London’s leading Consultants. For more information, and to find a service suitable for your care, find out more about the services that we offer.
Make an enquiry
If you have any questions relating to treatment options or pricing information, get in touch with us by filling out one of our contact boxes or giving us a call on 0207 078 3887.
Our Appointments Team have a dedicated and caring approach to finding you the earliest appointment possible with the best specialist.
If you are self-paying you don’t need a referral from your GP for a consultation. You can simply refer yourself* and book an appointment.
If you have health insurance (e.g. Bupa, Axa Health, Aviva), you will need to contact your insurer to get authorisation before any treatment, and in most cases you will also require a referral letter from your GP.
If you are not registered with a GP, we have an in-house private GP practice you can use. Alternatively, we can suggest the most appropriate course of action for you to take, given your location and individual circumstances.
*Please note – for investigations such as X-rays and MRIs, a referral will be required. However, we may be able to arrange this for you through our on-site private GP.
The latest news, insights and views from St John and Elizabeth Hospital.
Find out what we’re doing to keep you safe, read expert articles and interviews with our leading specialist Consultants, learn more about common conditions and get your questions answered.
Necessary cookies are absolutely essential for the website to function properly. This category only includes cookies that ensures basic functionalities and security features of the website. These cookies do not store any personal information.
Any cookies that may not be particularly necessary for the website to function and is used specifically to collect user personal data via analytics, ads, other embedded contents are termed as non-necessary cookies. It is mandatory to procure user consent prior to running these cookies on your website.