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Needle aponeurotomy for Dupuytren's contracture.

PURPOSE: To review the efficacy and safety of needle aponeurotomy for Dupuytren's contracture in Chinese patients.

METHODS: Seven men and one woman aged 50 to 80 (mean, 67) years underwent needle aponeurotomy for Dupuytren's contracture. Five were manual workers and the other 3 were retired. Their chief complaints were difficulty moving the fingers, clumsiness of the hand, and occasional pain in the palm. No patient had any family history of Dupuytren's contracture.

RESULTS: 41 points were released in 13 fingers (3 middle, 3 ring, and 7 little). Immediately after release, the respective mean flexion contracture correction of the metacarpophalangeal and proximal interphalangeal joints were 50 (from 50 to 0) and 35 (from 46 to 11) degrees. At 22-month follow-up, the respective mean residual flexion contracture of both joints were 12 and 27 degrees; the corresponding long-term improvements were 70 and 41%. No patient had a wound complication or neurovascular injury. All had a normal score for Disabilities of the Arm, Shoulder, and Hand.

CONCLUSION: For Chinese patients with Dupuytren's contracture, needle aponeurotomy is safe and effective. Long-term correction is better maintained in metacarpophalangeal than proximal interphalangeal joints (70 vs 41%).

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