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    Cleft Hand

    What is Cleft Hand ?

    Cleft hand is a rare birth defect in which the hand didn’t develop properly during fetal development, so affected hand has missing fingers, a V-shaped cleft and other deformities.

    What causes Cleft Hand ?

    There’s a genetic basis for typical cleft hands. If a parent has this condition, the child has a 50 percent chance of having it. Cleft hand can occur in isolation or associated with other body part deformity as syndrome.

    How does cleft hand affect child hand function ?

    It depends on the severity of the problem. Some children with a mild degree of cleft hand can grasp, pinch and release, while others can have an extreme lack of hand function.

    How does cleft hand presents ?

    In a cleft hand, usually clefts in the central (middle fingers) part of the hand, and they are usually V-shaped. However, clefts can also occur on the thumb side of the hand, or, less commonly, on the little finger side. There can be in various combinations.

    Cleft hands usually occur on both hands (bilateral), but they can also be unilateral, and can include one or both feet.

    How is a Cleft Hand diagnosed ?

    The condition can be detected on a routine prenatal ultrasound sometimes. But after the baby is born, the deformity is visible, so it can be evaluated clinically and by X-rays.

    How is Cleft Hand treated, and at what age ?

    Not all children need surgery for a cleft hand—if child has good hand function and no severe hand deformity, there is no indication of surgery. However, if child hand has significant functional or cosmetic problems, surgical indication stays.

    Surgery can be offered when a child is 1 to 2 years old.

    What are Goals of Cleft Hand correction surgery ?

    • close the cleft and make use of hand effectively
    • create a good working space between his thumb and index finger to allow for pinch and fine motor function
    • reorganize the skin and soft tissue
    • stabilize or transfer the bones of the hand
    • correct any deformities of the fingers or thumb

    What is long-term outlook of Cleft Hand surgery ?

    The outlook of cleft hand surgery depends on the severity of her condition, as well as associated conditions child may have.

    Child can have active, functional grasp, pinch and release, and an improvement in the appearance of hand and better alignment of fingers.

    As child grows, some gaps and deformities that were reconstructed by original surgery can recur. In these cases, additional procedures may be needed.

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