Causes & symptoms
Precise clarification of the consequences of malformations
Congenital malformations of the hands are often confined to a single hand and its functionality. However, in particularly severe cases, the malformations may be part of a complex malformation syndrome affecting other organ systems. An accurate diagnosis is therefore very important for your child.
Triggers of malformations of the hands
Congenital malformations of the upper limbs, especially the hands, usually arise spontaneously through a change in the genetic material. Such spontaneous malformations are usually confined to one hand and do not affect any other organs. However, toxic influences during pregnancy, such as alcohol, nicotine or drug abuse during the sensitive embryonic phase can also cause hand malformations. In particularly severe cases, malformations of the hands are part of a complex syndrome that primarily affects other organ systems, such as the heart, lungs or spine, interfering with and restricting their functionality. An accurate diagnosis is therefore important for the health of the affected baby.
Syndactyly is one of the most common malformations
The most common malformations of the hands are webbed fingers (syndactyly), missing or supernumerary fingers, and duplicated fingers or thumbs. The wide spectrum of complex malformations also includes fingers that are too short, the absence of one or more fingers, or even the absence of the entire hand. Severe malformations such as these are usually well detected by ultrasound examinations during pregnancy (intrauterine sonography). In contrast, simpler forms are often not identified during prenatal diagnosis and are only discovered at birth.