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  • Macrodactyly
  • Macrodactyly

Description of disability:

Macrodactyly is a rare condition in which an infant's fingers or toes are abnormally large because of overgrowth of bone and soft tissue.

In this case, one or more fingers or toes will be much larger than his other fingers or toes. It is more commonly considered static, which means that the enlarged finger or toe grows at the same rate as the normal finger or toe on your child's hand.

However, it can also be progressive, with the affected digits growing faster than the rest of the hand.

•   In the static type, the involved digits will generally be about one-and-a-half times the length and width of the normal digits

•   If the condition is progressive, the involved digit or digits can become enormous.


The goal of the treatment for macrodactyly is to provide maximal function of the affected hand or toe. The treatment modalities differ for the hands and foot. The surgical procedure is quite complicated as it usually involves multiple layers of tissue and may require more than one procedure to correct the deformity. The surgical procedure will have to be planned precisely keeping in mind the growth rate of the fingers which will involve close observation. Some of the surgical procedures done for correction of macrodactyly are:


Soft Tissue Debulking: In this procedure, the thickened layers of the skin and soft tissues are removed and replaced with healthy skin from some other area of the body. This is generally a staged procedure and is done about 10 to 12 weeks apart. This procedure is used to treat mild but progressive forms of macrodactyly.


Shortening Procedure: In this procedure, a removal of one of the phalanges in the hand or toe or removal of the metacarpal or metatarsal bone is done.


Ray Resection: In this procedure, a complete removal of the affected digit or digits is done especially if the condition is progressive. This procedure is done if the above two procedures described are not effective.

The surgery is done under local anesthesia as a day procedure.

Post operative care: 

Routine postoperative care including elevation of the part and immobilization and reviews every four days for 2 weeks.

The long-term outlook for a child treated for macrodactyly varies from child to child, depending on how severe his problem is.

An overall improvement in appearance and function can be expected. However, it's rare that a child's affected digits look and move perfectly in severe cases.


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