News

9 August 2021

Updates & Communications
August 2021

WELCOME NEW HAND THERAPISTS

Melbourne Hand Therapy would like to say a very big warm welcome to our new hand therapists who have recently joined our team. We would like to introduce Dan Johnson (physiotherapist), Rose Alibazi (physiotherapist), Jaime Do (occupational therapist) and Emma Locandro (Allied Health Assistant).

THERMOPLASTIC CUSTOM SPLINTS

At Melbourne Hand Therapy our experienced Therapists specialise in treating all hand and upper limb injuries and conditions including fractures. We provide a range of orthoses using a variety of different materials (thermoplastic, fiberglass, exos splints). Our highly skilled therapists fabricate the custom orthoses with the patient at the time of the initial appointment to provide the appropriate treatment for their injury.

We commonly use different varieties of thermoplastic for splinting fractures. Thermoplastic allows for moulding and contouring which offers additional support and optimal positioning. Thermoplastic is also lightweight, adjustable, water tolerant, comfortable and radiolucent.

These factors as well as our customised therapy plans enable a safe and efficient recovery for our patients. Please let us know if we can work with you to help your patients return to their full potential following a fracture.

DUPUYTREN'S CONTRACTURE

Dupuytren’s contracture is a progressive hand condition that causes thickening and tightening of the tissue (fascia) under the skin in your palm. When it first appears, Dupuytren’s contracture looks like a small bump (nodule), however it can progress to a thick cord which gradually contracts and bends the finger towards the palm. It most often affects the ring and little fingers and can occur in both hands.
Dupuytren’s contracture, often called Viking’s disease, is common in people of Northern European descent and can run in families. It is more common in men than women and generally between 50-70 years of age.

There are three common procedures to improve the straightness of the finger:

Fasciectomy: A surgical incision allows the surgeons to access and remove the thickened tissue.

Enzyme Injection (Xiaflex): This is a nonsurgical procedure where the injection breaks down the cord. Patients are required to return to their surgeon the following day to have the hand manipulated to stretch or break the cords.

Needle fasciectomy: Under a local anaesthetic, a needle is used to cut through the cord and release a large part of the contracture. It doesn’t remove the nodules, however can improve function dramatically with a simple procedure.

All options require consultation and discussion with a surgeon to determine which will give the patient the best outcome and hand therapy is generally required following each procedure.

Written by Kate Rayner (Occupational Therapist)

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