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Dupuytren's Contracture Exercises

author image Crystal Welch
Crystal Welch has a 30-year writing history. Her more than 2,000 published works have been included in the health and fitness-related Wellness Directory, Earthdance Press and Higher Source. She is an award-winning writer who teaches whole foods cooking and has written a cookbook series. She operates an HON-code-certified health-related blog with more than 95,000 readers. Welch has a B.B.A. from Eastern Michigan University.
Dupuytren's Contracture Exercises
Woman drying her hands with a towel Photo Credit: Medioimages/Photodisc/Photodisc/Getty Images

Dupuytren's contracture is a medical condition in which fibrous tissue in your fingers and palm area becomes thick and tight, causing fingers to curl and bend. Even though not a dangerous medical condition, severe cases may necessitate surgery if reaching the point of hindering everyday function. There are exercises to help strengthen and stretch your hands and fingers. As with any new exercise, consult with your doctor before attempting.

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Towel Grippers

Losing your ability to properly grasp items is a common symptom of Dupuytren's contracture. Improve your grip by using a towel as an exercise tool throughout the day while standing, sitting or lying down. Place a rolled-up towel in your affected hand, grasp it as firmly as possible and squeeze tightly. Hold the squeeze 10 seconds. Slowly release your grip and relax 10 seconds. Repeat 10 times.

Gentle Finger Flexes

Doing a variety of mild stretching maneuvers that improve finger flexibility can be included in exercises for mild cases of Dupuytren's contracture. Warm up your muscles properly before stretching by rubbing or massaging with warm oil for five minutes. Gently stretch your fingers by using your healthy hand to individually bend each finger, including your thumb, on your injured hand backward toward the top of your hand. Hold the stretch 10 seconds. Do not stretch beyond the pain level. Return to the original position and relax 10 seconds. Repeat five times.

Palm Lifts

Hand therapy maneuvers like palm lifts can stretch your contracted fingers by moving your wrists. Either sit or stand upright in front of a table. Place your hands, palms opened, onto the table and fully extend all your fingers. Gently lift your palm as high as possible without removing fingers from table. Feel the stretch along the top of your wrist and hand. Hold the stretch 10 seconds. Slowly return your wrist to the original position and relax 10 seconds. Repeat 10 times.

Finger Isos

Finger strengthening exercises play a key role in restoring your hand to a functioning level. Strengthen your fingers by including an isometric finger flexion maneuver in your Dupuyten's contracture exercises. Either sit or stand upright and lift both hands in front of you while bending your elbows. Turn your palms toward each other. Gently bend your fingers and place the tips of your left-hand fingers onto the tips of your right-hand fingers. Apply pressure as if pulling your left hand to the left and your right hand to the right. When done correctly, you will feel tension in your fingers, wrists and arms. Hold for 10 seconds, then release tension and relax 10 seconds. Repeat 10 times.

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