I have developed a pretty bad case of intrinsic contracture following a stroke several months ago. My surgeon is suggesting that I need a distal intrinsic release. Are there other options?


There are other options for treatment of intrinsic contracture, but your surgeon probably has a good reason to be suggesting this course of action. The most conservative treatment is a trial of Physical Therapy. This would probably focus on specific stretches and possibly casting. This therapy may also help address other issues associated with your stroke, and there could be other things also affecting the recovery of your use of your hand. If there is no change, or not enough change in about twelve months, to allow for neurologic recovery time, then surgery may be the next step. With this particular procedure there are different levels of resection depending on movement available in each individual, and will usually not require entire release of these muscles, which is a more conservative procedure.