What is hand surgery?Hand surgery is a broad term that encompasses different types of surgical procedures performed on the hand and wrist. These surgeries aim to either restore the normal motor function of the hands or to simply focus on restoring the natural appearance of our hands.
Hand surgeries can be performed due to several reasons; including hand injuries, deforming arthritis such as osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis, degenerative joint diseases, congenital defects of the hand, or infections involving the hand, etc.
Common types of Hand Surgery
The type of hand surgery performed on a patient depends on the root cause of the hand problem. There are different surgical procedures that are commonly performed on the hand which include:
Plastic Surgical Procedures
Hand Skin Grafts
These surgeries are performed on the hand to restore the natural continuity of the skin. To perform a skin graft, skin is taken from another part of the body and surgically grafted to an injured hand. Grafts are commonly performed after hand injuries and limb amputations, etc.
Hand Skin Flaps
These are similar to grafts but different in a significant way. Skin flaps are usually segments of skin from other areas of the body which are excised along with their blood supply and surgically grafted at the donor site, i.e., the hand.
Orthopedic procedures performed on the hand include surgeries for treating broken or fractured fingers or small bones of the hand. Closed reduction and fixation are used to hold the broken bones in place and allow healing of the bone fractures.
This surgery is performed in case of carpal tunnel or compartment syndrome. The syndrome can cause progressive loss of hand function due to nerve compression and needs fasciotomy to be treated completely.
Tendon & Nerve Repairs
Tendons are the tough connective tissue fibers that connect muscle to the bone. Due to injuries or progressive hand diseases, tendons can become injured and require hand surgery for the correction of their structure.
Nerve damage can occur in several types of hand or limb injuries and results in the partial or complete loss of hand function. Since nerves are a form of permanent tissue, they lack the required regenerative capacity and need manual surgical repair. As a general rule, the earlier the surgery after a nerve injury, the faster and more complete the recovery. Like skin grafts, nerve grafts are also performed in case large portions of peripheral nerves are damaged.
Joint Replacement or Arthroplasty
Arthroplasty is performed in advanced cases of severe deforming joint diseases like osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis. Aside from extreme pain, these joint diseases significantly diminish normal hand function and therefore reduce a patient’s quality of life. Replacing a deformed joint enables you to perform adequate daily functions involving the hand and improve everyday life.
Are you looking for a reputable hand doctor in Georgia, USA? Dr. Kolovich is a highly revered hand doctor and orthopedic surgeon. He is the cofounder and CMO of Oxos Medical, a developer of orthopedic imaging devices. He graduated cum laude at the Ohio State University and also attended the Harvard University. He is also the President of the Georgia Society for Surgery of the Hand.