What is Palmar Fasciectomy?
Palmar fasciectomy is a surgical procedure performed under local or general anesthesia to straighten bent fingers—a condition referred in medical terminology as Dupuytren’s contracture. What causes this condition is not clear; however, it seems to afflict people who either smoke or drink heavily. Diabetics and people who were treated with phenytoins for epilepsy are also prone to Dupuytren’s contracture. However, the disease can affect people who fall in neither of these categories, posing a great challenge for healthcare professionals. The symptoms, though painless, cause great inconvenience, as the last two fingers of the patient do not straighten up. Palmar fasciectomy has proved to be an effective treatment for Dupuytren’s contracture.
Necessity of Palmar Fasciectomy
Dupuytren’s contracture begins as a painless lump in the middle of the palm, thickening and contracting the skin, gradually pulling down the fingers. Left untreated for long, this condition might extend right up to the forearms. Healthcare professionals recommend treating this condition through palmar fasciectomy only if the palm fails to rest flat on a tabletop. Injections and physiotherapy are not usually sufficient on their own.
Palmar Fasciectomy and Post-surgery Health Care
Palmar Fasciectomy procedure begins with making a cut along the palm, zig zaging through the finger. The abnormal skin in the palm is cut out and the normal skin is left behind. The area is stitched up.
Post-palmar fasciectomy complications, though rare, are possible. The wound might heal slowly in cases of severe contractures, necessitating repeated dressings for at least six weeks. Occasional bruising of the nerve during surgery creates a temporary tingling sensation in the hand. In extreme cases, patients who suffer from scleroderma or diabetes experience serious complications leading to the amputation of the finger.