Our procedures cover three main kinds of problems with the appearance or function of your hand:
- those that result from injury
- those arising from degenerative conditions such as Carpal tunnel Syndrome, Dupuytren's disease or arthritis
- and abnormalities you were born with
Most acute hand injuries including broken bones and lacerations are best managed urgently in public hospitals. If the presentation of the injury is delayed, or if there is a functional problem following the initial treatment of the injury, we are very happy to review and advise you on appropriate further management.
We use surgery to repair damage to tendons, nerves, joints, and bones in your hand. In some cases, we graft tissue from a healthy part of your body onto the injured part. Usually these procedures are covered by ACC. A referral from your GP with information regarding the initial injury is useful.
Dupuytren’s disease is a condition where there is progressive fibrosis (thickening) of the palm of the hand. This can be associated with restriction on straightening the fingers and can cause significant functional problems. Our surgeons all offer surgical procedures to correct this condition including excision of the diseased tissue and sometimes including skin grafting. We use surgery to correct hand abnormalities that are present at birth such as too many or too few fingers, webbed fingers or joints that won't bend.
Carpal tunnel syndrome
Carpal tunnel syndrome arises when the main nerve supplying feeling in the hand is compressed at your wrist causes tingling, numbness, and pain in your hand. We can use surgery to release the tight bands at the wrist to make more room for the nerve.
We use surgery to correct hand abnormalities that are present at birth such as too many or too few fingers, webbed fingers or joints that won't bend.
There are many different hand operations depending on the problem. Carpal tunnel release is usually performed under local anaesthetic but most other hand surgery is performed under general anaesthetic as a day procedure. Usually a tourniquet is used to control bleeding during surgery and allow the surgeon to see structures in the hand more clearly.
Your specialist will inform you fully at your consultation about what your treatment involves.
After the operation
Time off work varies depending on the complexity of the operation, but even the most minor hand operation will often require 2 weeks off work.
Often you will be referred to a specialist Hand Therapist (Physiotherapist) for advice and supervision of your rehabilitation following the surgery. Your Hand Therapist will offer you advice on using your hand safely, scar management, control of swelling and the use of splints following surgery. Your surgeon and your hand therapist work together to get you the best outcome following surgery
All surgery has a risk of complications. Your specialist will inform you fully at your consultation about any risk of complications with your procedure.