Collect ALL the D-seases!!!

On Facebook last week, I mentioned that I seem to be collecting D-themed diseases. First diabetes, then depression. Now I have a third one to add to the mix.

During Penguicon, my wife noticed what looked like an elongated callus on my right hand, below the ring finger. (Spoiler: It’s not a tumor.) When it was still there two weeks later, I hopped online to do a little research, then went in to talk to the doctor. His diagnosis confirmed my guess, and the winner is…

Dupuytren’s Contracture

That link goes to the Wikipedia page, which includes a post-surgical picture with incision and stitches, so don’t click if that kind of stuff gets to you.

Basically, some connective tissue in my hand is misbehaving, which starts to restrict the extension of the tendon. Right now, it’s just a little vertical speed bump on my palm. Eventually, it will restrict the movement of my ring finger, and I won’t be able to extend it beyond a curved, clawlike position.

I think of this soon-to-be claw as the first step in my very, very slow transformation into a werewolf.

The good news is that it’s not painful, and it’s fairly straightforward to correct. Basically, the doctor said to let him know when it starts to become a problem, at which point he’ll hook me up with a hand surgeon to go in and clean out the affected tissue. Six weeks of recovery and physical therapy, and I’m good to go.

Note: I’m not looking for medical advice.

Dupuytren is less common in people my age. I guess I’m just precocious. There seems to be a correlation to diabetes as well. And it sounds like there’s a decent chance of recurrence in the long run.

Compared to some of the medical complications I’ve seen friends and family deal with, this is little more than an annoyance right now. I am a little anxious about the eventual surgery, though. I’m a writer, which is a much easier job for me to do with functional hands.

Fortunately, I should have a little while–maybe a few years?–before that becomes necessary.

The silver lining: It looks like the surgery leaves a zig-zag scar on your palm, which means after I heal, I’ll be able to tell people I stopped a Killing Curse WITH MY BARE HAND!