www.paywallnews.com Only News Behind Paywalls
Express UK / Life - Entertain

Dupuytren’s contracture: What is disease Margaret Thatcher had which makes fingers BEND?

DUPUYTREN’S CONTRACTURE is a fairly common condition that causes one or more fingers to bend into the palm of the hand. People that find it difficult to straighten their fingers should see their GP, urged Channel 4’s Embarrassing Bodies expert, Dr Dawn Harper.

Dupuytren’s contracture occurs when connective tissue in the palm thickens.

The thick tissue forms hard nodules under the skin, which grow to become cords.

The cords can tighten, pulling fingers and thumbs toward the palm.

While the condition isn’t life-threatening, it can be a nuisance, and could get worse over time, according to the NHS.

Margaret Thatcher famously suffered with the condition, along with former US President Ronald Reagan, and Love Actually actor Bill Nighy, said Dr Dawn.

GETTY Images

Dupuytren's contracture: Margaret Thatcher suffered from the condition

It is marvellously manageable if you catch it early

Dr Dawn Harper

“With so many tinctures and adornments to keep us occupied with caring for our hands, it’s so easy to lose sight of the more physical concerns of hand health, such as mobility and dexterity,” said Dr Dawn.

“Dupuytren’s contracture is progressive (which means it gets worse over time), and unfortunately has no cure.

“But, it is marvellously manageable if you catch it early, as any build-up of cells and collagen can be removed with straightforward surgery or injections.”

We’re not exactly sure what causes the condition, but links have been made between Dupuytren’s and smoking, drinking, diabetes, excess physical impact and injuries, Dr Dawn added.

GETTY Images

Dr Dawn Harper said more and more women are being diagnosed with Dupuytren's contracture

Hands are crucial to almost all of life’s daily tasks, so if you detect any lumps, bumps or pitting in your palms, go straight to your GP, she urged.

Difficulty straightening fingers, or skin tightening, could also be a sign of the condition.

“I feel particularly strongly about raising awareness of Dupuytren’s contracture amongst women, because it’s mainly associated as a condition that men have,” said Dr Dawn.

“However, more and more female Dupuytren’s sufferers in the UK are being diagnosed, meaning that we need to start waking up to the symptoms and treatment surrounding this condition.”

GETTY Images

Dupuytren's contracture makes fingers bend toward the palm

About 30 per cent of men with Peyronie’s disease - a condition which causes the penis to become curved when erect - also develop hardened scar tissue on other parts of the body, including for Dupuytren’s contracture.

Many cases of Dupuytren’s don’t need treatment, the NHS said.

Non-surgical treatments include radiation therapy and injections. The condition could also be treated by a small procedure which uses a needle to cut the cord which pulls the finger back.

In more severe cases, the cord can be cut in surgery to relieve tension, or the entire connective tissue can be removed.

Original Source

ADS

LATER

Life - Entertain

Attorney General Jeff Sessions: My answers have not changed

Attorney General Jeff Sessions told members of the House Judiciary Committee on Tuesday that his "answers have not changed" when it comes to his knowledge about contacts between members of the Trump campaign and Russian interests. CBSN political contributor and RealClearPolitics national political reporter Caitlin Huey-Burns joined CBSN to break down Sessions' testimony on Tuesday -- as well as the latest on allegations against Alabama Senate candidate Roy Moore and the GOP's tax reform push.

Read More