From the shoulder to the fingertips, your child’s “upper extremities” are every part of their arm. Upper extremity problems may involve the bones and muscles that attach arms to the rib cage, including the collarbone and shoulder blade. Conditions present at birth, medical issues, and injuries can all contribute to elbow, hand, shoulder, and wrist disorders, but no matter the cause, the expert pediatric orthopedic surgeons at Rochester Regional Health are here to help.
Our caring providers will carefully diagnose your child before finding a treatment that works for them. We know that one size does not fit all, and we cannot wait to help your child maximize their abilities.
Congenital deformities, deformities your child was born with, include radial or ulnar club hands, webbed fingers (syndactyly), finger and thumb duplications, and polydactyly. If your child has these or any other congenital deformity, options for treatment abound–including conservative options and surgical reconstruction. Your surgeon will work with you and your family to determine a treatment plan that meets your goals and needs.
Broken bones are called fractures, and occur often in children. Curious and active natures lead to an increase in fractures from accidents and falls, especially in the wrists and forearms of children. A fracture will cause immediate swelling and pain. It is important to properly set childhood fractures because the break may injure a growth plate, which is the area of a long bone that is still developing in growing children. Our providers will take caution when setting and treating fractures, using their experience to give your little one a growing chance.
Ganglion cysts are fluid-filled sacs that appear as a lump beside a tendon or joint. They are most commonly found in the finger or wrist joints, and can be extremely painful. Ganglion cysts may also make it difficult to use the hand, and your doctor can typically diagnose during a visit. Splinting, aspiration, and surgical excision are all treatment options your surgeon will talk through with you before creating an individualized treatment plan for your child.
Many things, including a cut, a fracture, or a crush injury can damage a nerve in your child’s wrists or hands. These are often characterized by numbness or pins-and-needles feelings in your child’s hands or fingers. Nerve injuries can be treated with both reconstructive surgery and non-surgical treatments to maximize your child’s recovery.
Sports injuries of many types can affect your child’s shoulders, wrists, and hands, including fractures, strains, and sprains. Treatment for sports-related injuries vary based on the nature of the injury, but if there is an obvious fracture, loss of movement or strength, a dislocated joint, or any other obvious signs of deformity, please schedule a consultation as soon as possible.
If your child’s finger or thumb is getting stuck in a bent position, they may be struggling with a trigger finger. This condition tends to be painless, but it can interfere with normal hand function. Nearly 30% of trigger finger cases in children resolve before the child turns one. If your child is past the age of one, it is unlikely their trigger finger will resolve on its own. Luckily, options for treating their trigger finger include surgery that will release the tendon from the tendon sheath–where it is catching–which will allow the tendon to glide more smoothly.
Upper extremity disorders are complex and can affect your child’s bones, muscles, nerves, tendons, and blood vessels in a wide variety of ways. If your child is struggling with an upper extremity issue, please call to schedule a consultation today. We will focus on restoring function while keeping their future growth in mind.
Our experts offer focused assessments and treatments for the range of leg, knee, foot and ankle issues, including injuries and deformities in children. We focus on restoring function while keeping future growth in mind.