What is Extensor Tendon Repair? 

Extensor tendon repair is a surgical procedure to repair the extensor tendons, which run from the forearm, across the back of the hand, and to your fingers and thumb, allowing you to straighten your fingers and thumb. This procedure is required when the extensor tendons rupture or are cut, resulting in loss of normal hand function. The main goal of this procedure is to reestablish the durability and integrity of the damaged tendon to renew as much previous function as possible.  

The extensor tendon repair procedure is performed under regional or general anesthesia. An incision will be created in the hand, and the two ends of the ruptured or damaged tendon will then be stitched together. The wound will be closed with stitches and a splint will be fitted to immobilize your hand for about four weeks.  

Extensor Tendon Repair Recovery 

After surgery, you may experience bruising, swelling, and pain, which can be lessened with pain medication. The repaired tendons will be weak until they are completely healed. You should elevate the extremity for as much as possible for the first 3-5 days to reduce swelling. Recovery may take anywhere from 1-3 months. Your surgeon will provide you with aftercare instructions which are important to follow to ensure optimal results.  

Following surgery, your finger and thumb movement should improve, though you may not regain full movement. The outcome is usually better when the injury was a clean cut to the tendon rather than one that involved damage to bones and joints. Some individuals may benefit from occupational therapy (OT) following surgery to help further restore their range of motion. 

Schedule a Consultation  

If you are interested in learning more about de extensor tendon repair surgery, please contact Neaman Hand Surgery for your personal consultation. We welcome hand surgery patients from the greater Portland, Salem, and Eugene, Oregon, areas. 

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