Hand malformations are usually due to a congenital condition with which the child is born. It can be hereditary or due to abnormalities in the baby’s development during pregnancy. In addition, 10% of babies are born with hand malformations.
There are different types of conditions:
- Additional finger or polydactyly: it would be the most common. It occurs when the baby develops one finger more than normal on the one hand. It may simply be additional soft tissue, easily removed, or contain bone, no joints. A fully functional sixth finger rarely develops. An extra thumb may develop ( preaxial polydactyly ), an extra little finger ( postaxial polydactyly ), or a central finger (central polydactyly ).
- Webbed fingers or syndactyly: It is estimated that 1 in 2,000 births suffer from this defect. It consists of two or more fingers that have not managed to separate and, as a result, are two joined fingers.
- Missing fingers or symbrachydactyly – is defined as an undeveloped hand. The baby is born with missing fingers. There are different degrees: mild, moderate, and severe. It is considered mild when the fingers are short but developed. Moderate is when most of the finger bones are missing. Finally, serious is when the fingers of the hand have not developed or have an incomplete or non-existent thumb.
- Abnormal thumbs or trigger thumbs: occurs when the tendon of the thumb suffers from an anomaly and hinders its mobility.
- Small or hypoplastic thumbs: The thumb has not fully formed in the womb.
- Club hand: The baby is born without part or all of the long bones that make up the forearm. The child’s hands face inward and limit wrist movement. It can occur on the side of the radius (short forearm and wrist curved towards the thumb) or on the ulna side (fixed wrist bent towards the little finger).
- Cleft hand ( ectrodactyly ): The baby is born without middle fingers. It can be typical, and the hand is V-shaped, it can affect both hands and feet; or atypical, with the hand in the shape of a U, usually affects one hand.
Prognosis of the disease
They will have few or many adaptation problems. The different challenges they can face are:
- development problems
- Difficulties in day to day activities
- Limitations to performing certain types of sports and exercises.
- Social and emotional problems
Medical tests for malformations of the hand
Malformations can be easily detected at birth or during pregnancy through ultrasound.
What are the causes of malformations?
The causes may have a family origin or occur spontaneously.
Treatments for hand deformities
The most common treatment is pediatric hand surgery, so you will be referred to pediatric plastic surgeons or orthopedic surgeons.
Treatment may include:
- Orthopedics (splints or supports).
- Prosthetics (artificial limbs).