Harvard Men's Health Watch

Unfolding bent fingers: New handiwork for bacteria

Dupuytren's contracture is one of the most common chronic hand conditions that affects tissues in the palm of the hand. Stages include thickening and pitting of the skin, then a painless nodule, followed by firm cords that develop along the tendons responsible for bending the fingers toward the palms. Over time, the cords tighten, bending the fingers inward. A new medication (an enzyme produced by Clostridium histolyticum), a bacterial cause of deadly gas gangrene offers an alternative treatment.
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