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Hand Surgery Procedures

Graham Plastic Surgery offers a wide spectrum of hand surgery services including carpal tunnel release, trigger finger release, ganglion cyst treatment, thumb arthritis treatment, and rheumatoid arthritis treatment. Due to his extensive Plastic and Hand Surgery Training, no one is more qualified in the Rochester NY area than Dr. Graham to perform hand surgery.

Dr. Graham is Fellowship Trained in Hand Surgery. This means, that in addition to receiving hand surgery education during his Plastic Surgery Training, he completed an additional year specializing ony in hand surgery. He completed his Hand Fellowship at the renowned Christine Kleinert Institute in Louisville, KY. This is one of the elite hand fellowship programs in the country and is felt by many to be the be one of the birthplaces of hand surgery in the US. The first successful flexor tendon repair and first hand transplant in the US were performed at this center.

In addition to being Fellowship Trained in Hand Surgery, Dr. Graham is a member of the American Society for Surgery of the Hand as well as the American Association for Hand Surgery. He regularly stays up to date on the educational literature on hand surgery and is constantly exploring new techniques.

Hand Conditions We Treat:

History of Hand Surgery

The field of hand surgery is one of the more recent surgical specialties to emerge. Major Handdevelopments in hand surgery in the United States occurred during World War II.  Numerous hand injuries from battle overwhelmed the physicians who cared for injured soldiers. The US Army Surgeon General, Dr. Norman T. Kirk, realized the need for specialized care of the injured hand. He recognized that repair of damaged hands required combined expertise from a variety of subspecialty fields – orthopaedic, plastic, neurologic, and vascular surgery. However, it was impractical if not impossible for these specialists to work simultaneously or in series during combat. Therefore, Dr. Kirk established nine regional hand centers at Army Hospitals in the United States, responsible for treating wounded soldiers and training surgeons in the complete care of the hand.

Dr. Sterling Bunnell, a private practice general surgeon from San Francisco, was challenged by Dr. Kirk to lead the training programs. As a consultant to the U.S. Army, Dr. Bunnell travelled between the military hand centers and dedicated his career to educating hand surgeons. He was instrumental in the reconstruction and rehabilitation of approximately 20,000 hands of soldiers. Using his experience, Dr. Bunnell wrote a textbook which served as the premier reference for hand surgery for nearly 30 years. Many of the great pioneers in the field of hand surgery were influenced by the hands of Dr. Bunnell. Modern hand specialists are indebted to these giants who have expanded our understanding and abilities in treatment of the hand.

Today, hand surgeons begin their training in orthopaedic, plastic, or general surgery residencies. They then complete an additional year of training in an accredited hand fellowship, specializing in the injuries, diseases, and conditions unique to the hand. In addition to surgery, hand surgeons are trained in non-operative treatment and are, therefore, able to provide comprehensive care to patients with hand problems.

A Focus on Results

Being Hand Fellowship Trained, Dr. Graham is up to date on the most advanced techniques in hand surgery. This means that he can achieve better results than a general orthopedic or plastic surgeon. He is facile with the newest techniques, which much of Rochester is yet to realize. One example is his Endoscopic Carpal Tunnel technique, which is a procedure with much less pain and a much shorter recovery than open carpal tunnel release.

Reducing Hand Surgery Costs

Dr. Graham also realizes that healthcare costs are spiraling out of control. As a result, many patients are now uninsured or have extremely high deductibles. For this reason, Dr. Graham offers many hand procedures in his office surgery suite. Many studies have shown this technique to be safe, efficient, less wasteful, and much more economic than presenting to a hospital for hand surgery.