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Forum Name: Surgery Topics

Question: Finger Distraction Lengthening


 Kirstin2009 - Mon Sep 07, 2009 2:35 pm

Okay, when I was 4 years old I smashed my pinky finger in a door at daycare. They took me to a hospital and the doctor wanted to amputate it down to the first knuckle but my mother didn't want to amputate. So they found a doctor who pretty much just sewed it up, keeping the distal part of my finger. They said the finger was not broken but it was about half an inch shorter than my other pinky finger. So here I sit eighteen years old with a short disfigured pinky which is indeed broken and missing the end of the bone. I don't know if overtime when the bone developed it just wasn't there or what. It does not hurt or bother me but I am not comfortable with the way it looks. I found a website online that had a procedure that lengthened a finger very very similar to mine by using a palatal expansion clamp and intercalated bone graft. I don't know if this procedure has a certain name or not. The problem is that I cant find a surgeon who does this. The website was eatonhand.com but I just found it by typing "finger distraction lengthening" into a search engine. It shows pictures of before during and after the procedure that might give whoever is interested in helping me a better understanding of what I am talking about and how my finger looks. If anyone knows any surgeons that can help me out it would be great help. Like any girl I dream of getting married one day and showing my engagement ring of to everybody without them noticing and asking "Oh my gosh! What happened to your finger?!?!".
 Dr.M.Aroon kamath - Fri Oct 02, 2009 2:56 am

User avatar Hi Kirstin2009,

I am really sorry about that.I understand your urgency in getting your finger back to its original shape.However, i would advise you to consider carefully the pros and especially the cons.With all the most modern techniques available, a surgeon may not be able to re-create your little finger to look as authentic as the one in your other hand.The little finger contributes only about 10% to the overall hand function.Ray Amputation of the said finger with removal of the head of the related metacarpal bone would result in a cosmetically acceptable hand.you have to choose carefully between a repaired, but less than satisfactory repair(which again may be commented upon during during the marriage ceremony) and an amputation which may be more cosmetic in the long run without significant loss of function.I personally would have advised my daughter (if she were in a similar situation) the latter choice.

Dr.M.Aroon Kamath.

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