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Practical Management of Tendon Disorders in the Hand

Farnebo, Simon M.D., Ph.D.; Chang, James M.D.

Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery: November 2013 - Volume 132 - Issue 5 - p 841e–853e
doi: 10.1097/PRS.0b013e3182a48ccf
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Learning Objectives: After reviewing this article, the participant should be able to: 1. Recognize and treat common tendinopathies such as trigger finger and de Quervain tenosynovitis. 2. Recognize and treat flexor tendon and extensor tendon injuries. 3. Define the different zones where flexor tendon and extensor tendon injuries occur and identify the surgical challenges related to each zone.

Summary: Common tendon disorders in the hand range from simple trigger fingers to more complex zone II flexor tendon injuries. The goal of treatment in all cases is to aim for optimal early strength and to create conditions favorable for early rehabilitation to decrease the risk of tendon scarring and subsequent poor range of motion. This CME article reviews the presentation, evaluation, state-of-the-art treatment, and outcomes of the treatment of trigger finger, de Quervain tenosynovitis, and flexor tendon and extensor tendon injuries. New developments in the different areas are highlighted to inform the reader of emerging techniques in the treatment of tendon disorders of the hand.


Palo Alto, Calif.

From the Division of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, Stanford University Medical Center; and the Section of Plastic Surgery, Veterans Affairs Palo Alto Health Care System.

Received for publication March 19, 2012; accepted August 20, 2012.

The authors contributed equally in the writing of this article.

Disclosure: Neither of the authors has a financial interest or commercial association to declare in relation to the content of this article.

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James Chang, M.D., Division of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, Stanford University Medical Center, 770 Welch Road, 4th Floor, Stanford, Calif. 94305,

©2013American Society of Plastic Surgeons