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Handchir Mikrochir Plast Chir. 2004 Apr-Jun;36(2-3):75-84.

An introduction to congenital hand anomalies.

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  • 1University of Sydney, Department of Hand Surgery and Peripheral Nerve Surgery, Royal North Shore Hospital, Sydney, Australia.


The intention of this introduction is to provide a platform from which ensuing articles may deal with the details of management of specific entities. A basic knowledge of the process of limb development and an appreciation of our current knowledge of the causations of abnormal limb development are necessary to assist the surgeon in explanation as to how and why the child has the limb anomaly. Undoubtedly it is from this knowledge that prevention and improved management will evolve in the future. Some words about classification are appropriate. This is always a contentious issue, as classification cannot currently be precisely related to causation but is necessary such that those working in the field can speak in one language and understand each other. Finally, I will outline a philosophy on which to base both indications for, and timing of surgical intervention.

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