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Conditions We Treat

Hand Surgery and Congenital Hand Program

Phoenix Children’s Hand Surgery and Congenital Hand Program’s team of experts treats children with all problems of the hands and forearm – including injuries that children suffer in accidents and sports, as well as congenital differences.

Approximately one in 600 babies are born with an abnormality of the upper limb, which includes the hand and arm. These differences can impact the shape, function and appearance of the child’s hands.

Congenital Differences We Treat

  • Amniotic band syndrome – tight bands of the amniotic sac detach and wrap around the baby in the womb restricting finger development or growth
  • Arthrogryposis – joint contractures, stiffness, muscle weakness and limited motion
  • Camptodactyly – frequent cause of fingers being held in a flexed or bent position, most often affecting the small finger
  • Cleft hand – a split through the hand that can result in missing or fused fingers
  • Clinodactyly – a curved finger that looks like a hook and deviates toward one side
  • Hypoplastic thumbs or digits – missing or underdeveloped fingers or thumbs
  • Limb defects or longitudinal deficiencies – part of the arm or hand fails to develop properly, or the thumb may be missing or incorrectly formed. These issues include:
    • Radial club hand – a short forearm and wrist turned toward the thumb side
    • Ulnar club hand – the wrist is bent toward the little finger side of the hand
  • Macrodactyly – oversized fingers or thumbs
  • Madelung deformity – abnormal wrist shape
  • Polydactyly – extra fingers or thumbs (one of the most common congenital hand differences)
  • Symbrachydactyly – shortened or missing fingers that also can be webbed or fused
  • Syndactyly – webbed or fused fingers (a common birth defect of the upper limb)
  • Trigger thumb and finger – abnormality of the tendon that holds fingers or thumb in a flexed or bent position

Traumatic Conditions We Treat Caused by Accidents or Injuries

  • Burns
  • Fractures of the fingers, wrist and forearm
  • Brachial plexus injuries – damage to a group of nerves in the neck and upper torso that controls hand and arm movement and sensation; can be damaged during birth or trauma
  • Crush injury – such as those caused by a door or heavy object that damages the fingers, hand, wrist or forearm
  • Deficits – weakness or lack of function due to old injuries or scars in the hand or arms
  • Muscle injuries – tears, strains or other damage
  • Nerve injuries – tears, strains or other damage
  • Nonunions and malunions – when broken bones don’t heal adequately or heal in an abnormal position
  • Peripheral nerve injuries – numbness or weakness in the upper extremity caused by compression or trauma of nerves that branch off the brain or spinal cord
  • Soft tissue injuries – defects in the skin leading to scars or open wounds
  • Tendon injuries – tears, strains or other damage
  • Weakness, loss of function, pain or numbness caused by an old injury or scarring

Other Medical Conditions We Treat

  • Arthritis  – inflammation that causes pain and stiffness in the joints of the fingers and wrist
  • Contractures – joints stuck in a fixed position from spasticity (an abnormal increase in muscle stiffness) or due to other conditions, such as cerebral palsy
  • Infections
  • Tumors of the upper extremity, such as vascular malformations, hemangiomas, ganglion cysts (masses or lumps) or lipomas
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