Patients with knots that form under the skin and bend their fingers may have a rare hand deformity known as Dupuytren’s Contracture. The deformity can make it difficult for the patient to straighten their fingers, which can reduce normal hand function.
Dupuytren’s Contracture can lead to other conditions as well, including plantar fibromatosis. While it’s usually not painful, it can be debilitating. The cause of Dupuytren’s Contracture isn’t known, but it is believed to be influenced by genetics and tobacco and alcohol use.
In mild cases, Dupuytren’s Contracture doesn’t need treatment and can simply be monitored by your doctor during your regular checkups. For more severe cases, steroid injections, radiation therapy, physical therapy, or needle aponeurotomy. With needle aponeurotomy, the doctor numbs the area and uses a needle to put holes in the stiffened tissue. The finger is then stretched out, loosening the tissue and allowing the fingers to bend and stretch more normally.
In extreme cases, surgery may be necessary to remove the stiffened tissue. In rare cases, the finger may need to be amputated.