Dr Steve Carter

ORTHOPAEDIC SURGEON

Windblown Hand


What is a windblown hand?

Windblown hand is a congenital hand defect, also known as ulna drift and is characterised by fingers bending towards the little finger, or ulna side, of the hand. Windblown hand can prevent normal use of the hands depending on its severity.

Though its cause is unknown, windblown hand can be hereditary and has also been linked to genetic disorders such as arthrogryposis, a joint disorder present at birth. Sometimes, however, the defect occurs sporadically.

How is a windblown hand treated?

Children born with severe cases of windblown hand can experience difficulties when learning how to write and perform other important motor skills when they grow up. This can impact their overall physical and emotional development, and affect how they socialise too.

Dr Carter can treat windblown hands surgically in cases where children are severely impacted by the deformity. Before deciding on the best surgical approach however, Dr Carter will first need to examine the affected hand through a series of test and X-rays because every windblown case is different and needs unique treatment.

Surgery to correct a windblown hand is performed when the affected child is between 1 and 2 years old. The process involves reconstructing the hand so that normal movement can be achieved. During the procedure, Dr Carter corrects the bend present in the fingers and deformities in the palms. This can involve the bones, tissue and ligaments of the hand. Afterwards, the hands must be placed in a cast for several weeks to ensure that they heal correctly.