Prosthetic Options for Symbrachydactyly
by Amber Henson, on Jul 19, 2022
Symbrachydactyly is a congenital condition which presents in different ways, including shortened fingers, missing fingers (see the image below), webbed fingers or possibly a congenital amputation above the wrist. Some children receive surgery to lengthen fingers or open webspace between fingers to allow for better use of their hand. Over the years, we have had many patients who have symbrachydactyly, including teenagers with the condition who have decided that a prosthesis would be helpful for their lives, sometimes because they are interested in sports or weightlifting.
There have been significant advancements made in the world of partial hand prosthetic devices in the past 10 years. For a long time, individuals with partial hand limb differences had to "make do" and live without a prosthesis due to the limited options available to them. Thankfully, that is not the case anymore! Both Naked Prosthetics and Point Designs make multi-positional digits that can attach to a socket that goes over someone’s hand, like in the picture above.
One of our patients, Hayes, has an "open concept" device that his prosthetist fit him with – you can see it better in the picture below. Instead of creating a socket that goes over the patient's hand entirely, there's a space for Hayes hand to interact and feel his environment – but he still gets the benefit of the prosthesis to hold objects.
There are other options as well, including body-powered devices, myoelectric devices and cosmetic prosthetic options. You can learn more about partial hand devices and their advancements in our article Better Choices for People with Partial Hand and Finger Loss, and you can watch our patients use them in our article Finger and Partial Hand Devices in Action.
For parents of children with symbrachydactyly, they may want to connect with the group the Lucky Fin Project. This cause was formed after the founder had a daughter with symbrachydactyly. This organization is a support network for parents that offers resources, education, information about specialized camps and prosthetic care for children. You can also find more resources here: Resources for Parents of Children with Upper Limb Differences or Limb Loss.
Want to learn more about our fitting process, how referrals work and how to obtain a device for yourself or your child? Check out our article, The Process of Getting a Prosthetic Device: From Start to Finish. You may also find this article helpful: Terminal Devices for Babies, Children and Adolescents.
If you’re ready to speak with our clinical team about prosthetic options, simply contact us and ask for a consultation. We offer them in person and via video chat. Do you or someone you know have symbrachydactyly and want to let your peers know about your experience? We’d love it if you left a comment below. Thanks for reading!
For more information, see related Arm Dynamics articles here: