Hand immobilization in children


One of the possible complications connected with operations on a child’s face is that the child can possibly reach and damage the newly operated area with his hands and thus nullify the surgeon’s work. There have been numerous cases of facial operations, for example of corrected cleft lips, whose outcome has been spoiled due to “one hand too many” that has resulted in a breakdown of the surgical wound, causing poor healing of the scar. In order to reduce this risk the team of surgeons and the anaesthesiologists who treat children must find a way to control the hands of their young patients by making sure that the hands are positioned in such a way to prevent them from traumatizing the operated area; however, a certain autonomy should be maintained. This restraining element, therefore, must be rigid enough to limit arm movements, but at the same time must guarantee flexibility so that the arm does not assume a completely fixed position. It must be light in order not to tire the child, easily placed, washable and reusable. In addition, a cannula needle could also be present in the arm or on the back of the hand and this device should be easily removed in order to control its correct positioning. Freedom of movement of the fingers of these little hands would also be useful so that the child would have the “illusion” that his hands were free even if his arms were limited in their movements. Thus, the ideal “instrument” should include all these characteristics. There are certainly products on the market such as malleable or premade extension splints which have all of these features but they are extremely costly and may not be available in

DOI: 10.1007/s00238-003-0563-0

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Cite this paper

@article{Abenavoli2003HandII, title={Hand immobilization in children}, author={Fabio Massimo Abenavoli and Roberto Corelli}, journal={European Journal of Plastic Surgery}, year={2003}, volume={26}, pages={375-376} }