Skip to content

Dupuytren's & Other Lesser Known Ailments

A while back I wrote a blog about my treatment approach to Dupuytren’s Contracture. I wrote the blog to showcase that a chiropractor can, and does, do more than “crack backs”.  Of course, if you’re reading this, you’re likely already a patient of mine and, thus, know this already.  But, for the “internet” world, it’s a worthwhile blog to highlight some of the lesser known conditions that a chiropractor, and especially me, treats on a fairly regular basis, including:


  • Tennis & Golf Elbow – properly termed Lateral & Medial Epicondylopathy (pain at the elbow).
  • Knee Pain – including biomechanical problems with the knee cap (patella), and the main knee joint (tibio-femoral)
  • Sore feet – including plantar fasciitis, bunions, arthritic toes
  • Shoulder problem – including rotator cuff tears, tendonopathy, “frozen shoulder”
  • Headaches – this is one that I *hope* people already know is very treatable by a chiropractor, but I’ll put it on the list!


The reason many are surprised that a chiropractor (or me, in this case) can, and does, treat all of the above (and more) is because chiropractors are trained to diagnose and treat the entire physical body, and to consider the psychosocial aspect of pain and injuries.  The mere fact that, historically, many chiropractors do not treat all of the above is more a reflection of their practice style, rather than their competence.  Having said that, once you’ve been practicing a certain way for long enough, your competence to manage other injuries suffers. I routinely meet people who are surprised to learn that I treat the whole body, and not just back pain.  When I explain that the biomechanical approach to pain and injury is fairly consistent through the body, they begin to understand my evidence-based approach to biomechanical injuries.  Layer on top of this the recognition of the psychosocial variables involved in people’s pain, and now we have a better understanding of what “going to this chiropractor” is all about.


With that said, a worthy update on treating Dupuytren’s Contracture:  For starters, a quick review that this condition is poorly understood.  We don’t know what causes it, and there’s little to be done medically, aside from surgery to cut the tendons and/or to inject medicine that helps ‘dissolve’ the contracted muscle/tendon.  Dupuytren’s Contracture is when the muscles of the hand (usually the muscles that lead to the pinky & 4th finger) get so tight that they cause the pinky and 4th finger to bend so much that the fingers become unusable; Plus, the contracted state of the finger joints cause pain. When a patient with this condition comes to my office for treatment (a.k.a. “hope”), I take a biomechanical approach to what might be a biomechanical problem.  I use my Cold Laser Therapy in combination with the Graston Technique, Functional Release soft tissue approaches and back it all up with training the muscles to encourage the contracted tissue to “learn” to be longer and less contracted.  Success with these cases has proven to be dependent on the stage of the condition when it presents to my office.  Case in point: Earlier in the summer, a gentleman presented to me with the most severe case I have treated.  He is destined for the medical interventions discussed above, but in my short experience with him, we achieved a minor improvement of his contracted palm and finger.  And, in a separate, ongoing case, I’m helping a woman manage her minor contracted palm and fingers with my techniques.  I’m thrilled to report that she is more than pleased with my approach and the improvement of her hand and fingers.

4 Join the Conversation

  1. Bonnie Deyaeger RAc says
    Sep 20, 2019 at 9:04 PM

    Hello I practice Acupuncture in BC. I have a client who has Dupuytren's in both hands the left is more severe. Though I have been working with her for a number of months and yes we are getting a softening of the tissues but she had heard about you and your clinic from family in Toronto. Her question is do you feel if she came out see you if it might improve quicker. Also as you have had more experince with this problem maybe a trip out would work and how often would she need to see you.

    • says
      Sep 21, 2019 at 3:37 PM

      Hi Bonnie. Thanks for your inquiry. I'll email you privately to discuss.

  2. Penelope Appleton-Burton says
    Oct 08, 2021 at 10:57 AM

    Hello, as a pianist I am desperately trying to find an alternative to surgery. I have a contracture of both little fingers but the worst is in my left hand which is beginning to affect the finger next to it. I would be grateful for any solutions/ suggestions that you may have. Many thanks Penelope Appleton-Burton

    • says
      Oct 08, 2021 at 12:35 PM

      Hi Penelope, I empathize with your situation - as a chiropractor, my hands are my lifeline - so, I appreciate you looking for all the ways you can help your contracture. As my blog would've stated, I often incorporate: Laser Therapy, hands-on & instrument assisted soft tissue treatment, as well as exercise advice for the forearms, hands, fingers to combat a muscle contracture. I've had a variety of outcomes: Some of the worst contractures responded, but not enough, to the treatment, and ultimately went on to have either a medication to "dissolve" the contracture, or surgery. The mildest contractures tend to respond really well and then it's about "maintenance". As a piano player, you're going to need full mobility of your wrist and fingers. I cannot promise to deliver, but I would be more than willing to work with you and give you an honest opinion. Then, ultimately, you're in charge and will determine if the outcome of my treatment(s) is enough. You're welcome anytime. You can call or book online. Good luck!

Add Your Comment (Get a Gravatar)

Your Name


Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *.