Could my work have caused Dupuytren’s contracture?
Recently I have been diagnosed with Dupuytren Contracture by my orthopedic doctor. My question is why did it all of a sudden show up in both hands close to a year ago.?
I am of Scandinavian decedent. I am almost 58 years old and a female. The work I have been doing the past 28 years is a repetitious type. The last 2 years I been doing banding with a 14# bander, and running around like a chicken with my head cut off. My lumps looked much worse when I was working. They laid me off permanently due to the fact I could not get around as fast as I used to. I have other health problems going on too.
Could the job I had been doing contribute to the fact I have this disease? Thank you.
Sorry to hear of your problem.
Your questions are very specific about your personal situation, and there is no way I can directly answer you. At best I can only respond in broad generalities.
Based on the way you present your brief history, it certainly sounds like you have a classic situation for Dupuytrens. Your Scandinavian descent, age, rapid onset, and heavy repetitious work with your hands are all very familiar to me as I communicate with men and women with Dupuytrens. So in this sense you nicely fit the Dupuytren’s profile.
Since the exact cause of Dupuytren’s contracture is not known or established, at this time it is often referred to as a condition of multifactoral causation. It is explained often that DC is a hereditary condition that may or may not appear during the course of a person’s life dependent upon the occurrence of a sufficient trigger(s) to start the disease process. Hand trauma is often listed as a primary triggering factor. Liver and lung disease, as well as diabetes, are also common trigger factors. Since you mentioned that you have other health problems going on currently, my guess is that one or more of your other heatlh problems fall into these categories.
If you put all of this together it appears that the answer to your question why your Dupuytrens suddenly showed up last year, is that you finally added enough stresses to your overall health and to your hands in particular to tip the scales against you.
For this reason it is difficult, if not impossible, to say that your Dupuytren’s contracture is a work-related problem since there are hereditary factors at play in your history and this cannot be dismissed. As with many health problems, it appears that a few factors finally caught up with you and caused your genetic predisposition to finally express itself in your hands.
Since you say that your hand lumps looked much worse when you were working, I suggest that it might be possible for to assist your recovery by using the ideas on the DCI website to heal your hand problem. You will never know until you try. If you need any help, please let me know. TRH