Dupuytren’s disease

Cancer Partners UK provides radiotherapy treatment for people in the early stages of Dupytren’s Contracture in partnership with Dr Richard Shaffer, a leading expert in using radiotherapy to help alleviate the condition.

Dupuytren’s contracture is not cancerous but a benign thickening of the tissue under the skin of the palm of the hand which typically starts as a small lump that generally affects the ring or little finger.. If left untreated, it can cause the finger to bend or contract towards the palm. Early treatment of Dupuytren’s Contracture using radiotherapy has been shown to slow or stop it worsening and prevent the fingers contracting. As a result the need for hand surgerycan be avoided.

During treatment radiation is aimed towards the nodules and cords associated with the disease in order to soften the nodules and cords, and prevent contractures of the hand. The radiation is typically given over five consecutive days, excluding weekends, and is repeated after a break of about eight weeks.

Radiotherapy treatment for Dupuytren’s contracture has been approved for use in England by the National Institute of Clinical Excellence (NICE) and Cancer Partners UK can provide treatment at any of its centres.

Sometimes people have other conditions associated with Dupuytren's disease:

  • Ledderhose disease is very similar to Dupuytren's disease, but affects the feet. Generally people get lumps but no contracture. This disease can also be treated with radiotherapy.
  • Peyronie's disease is a lump of tissue that may form in the shaft of the penis that may be painful and may make it bent when erect. This can also be treated with radiotherapy to reduce the pain.
  • Frozen shoulder
  • Knuckle pads

For more information on how Cancer Partners UK can help with Dupuytren’s Contracture or one of the other conditions, click here.

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