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Facts on Hand (Dupuytren’s contracture) | Factors of Dupuytren’s Contracture

Factors of Dupuytren's Contracture

What causes Dupuytren's contracture?

The cause of Dupuytren's contracture is unknown. Genetic factors may lead to some people getting Dupuytren's more than others. There are other factors that may increase the risk of Dupuytren's, such as diabetes, alcohol consumption, and smoking, but the connection has not been clinically proven.

Early signs

Before the contracture happens, patients may see changes in the palm caused by Dupuytren's disease. As the disease progresses into a contracture, the following changes may occur in your hand:

  • Painless nodulesNodule [NAH dyool]: a small knot or lumpGo to GlossaryX, or lumps, may form under the skin of the palm near the crease of the palm
  • Dimples may form and the skin may thicken
  • NodulesNodule [NAH dyool]: a small knot or lumpGo to GlossaryX may disappear as a cord begins to form

How Dupuytren's progresses

Dupuytren's contracture changes over time, and varies from patient to patient. For some, it may progress over many years. For others, contracture may happen much more quickly. Speak to your doctor to learn about treatments, including a nonsurgical option.

Cords and contracture

Some patients with Dupuytren's contracture have described a noticeable or raised "cord" that extends from the palm into the finger. Over time, the cord can tighten, pulling the finger downward and decreasing the range of motion. Other fingers may become affected as well.

People who develop signs of Dupuytren's contracture in their 20s and 30s often have contractures that develop quickly and are more severe. They may also experience contractures affecting multiple fingers on both hands.

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