Question:What is Dupuytren's disease and what causes it? Can I get it from living with someone who has it?
Dupuytren's disease isn't a contagious condition. It's the overproduction of fibrous tissue that causes a thick cord or band of fascia in the hand. Sometimes the feet are affected too.
Scientists aren't sure what causes it. They think there's a genetic link. People with a family history of Dupuytren's are more likely to have it than someone with no family history.
It's actually fairly common in people of Celtic (Scottish) origin. Adults over age 60 with this background seem to be targeted. In the past, a history of smoking, diabetes, and high cholesterol have been linked with Dupuytren's.
If you do have a family history it's not clear if you are more likely to develop the disease if you smoke or have any of these other factors.Sandip Hindocha, MBChB, et al. The Heritability of Dupuytren's Disease: Familial Aggregation and Its Clinical Significance. In The Journal of Hand Surgery. February 2006. Vol. 31A. No. 2. Pp. 204-210.
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