A retrospective review of 148 patients with ulnar polydactyly was conducted to analyze the types, patterns of involvement, associated anomalies, treatments, and outcomes of this malformation. The hands only were involved in 123 patients, both hands and feet in 20 patients, and five patients had mixed radial and ulnar polydactyly. Ulnar polydactyly was more prevalent among males. Among African Americans, the condition was often bilateral. When unilateral, ulnar polydactyly occurred more often on the left side. The racial distribution was 103 African Americans (70 percent), 37 Caucasians (25 percent), four Native Americans, three Latin Americans, and one Asian. Five types were encountered: type I cutaneous nubbin, type II pedunculated digit, type III articulating digit with fifth metacarpal, type IV fully developed digit with sixth metacarpal, and type V polysyndactyly. The distribution of types in order of frequency was type II, III, V, I, and IV. Types I and II ulnar polydactyly combined were more prevalent (82 percent) than types III, IV, and V (18 percent). Types I and II were more common among African Americans. Types III, IV, and V ulnar polydactyly occurred more frequently among Caucasians, but these were slightly less prevalent than types I and II in this racial group. Five patients were syndromic; four were Caucasians, and one Asian. Most cases of ulnar polydactyly of the hand were treated by ligation (71 percent) in the nursery, whereas polydactyly of the foot was more often referred to a specialist to be treated by surgical ablation (92 percent). Treatment complications occurred more frequently in the hands than in the feet. The complication rate after ligation of ulnar polydactyly of the hand was 23.5 percent. The two main complications were tender or unacceptable nubbins and infections. (Plast. Reconstr. Surg. 107: 1449, 2001.)
From the University of Oklahoma and Baptist Medical Center. Received for publication March 7, 2000; revised July 25, 2000.
Ghazi Rayan, M.D.
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©2001American Society of Plastic Surgeons