MEMPHIS, Tenn. — Dupuytren's Contracture is when knots of tissue form under the skin, eventually bending a person's fingers.
"I can have symptoms that go all the way from my fingers to my shoulders,” said Pam Gray.
She had been looking for help with her condition, but was having trouble finding it. She was looking for radiation therapy.
“Finding a provider that I was comfortable with here in Memphis was tremendous. And I have called every radiation oncologist in Memphis when I was searching for someone locally. And Dr. Ballo was willing to do the treatment. And I did not find anyone else that had experience with it,” she said.
“This is a progressive condition that we can actually use radiation therapy too halt the progression of the disease,” said Dr. Matthew Ballo, Medical Director of Radiation Oncology at St. Francis-Memphis. “This is something that starts out as a painless nodule in the tendon of one of your fingers. And in some patients, nodules can become painful.”
“It's a very short, simple, painless procedure,” said Gray. “The radiation is only put very locally to where the tissue is abnormal in your hands."
"Any radiation oncologist theoretically can treat a benign condition if they have the interest to do so. Currently I'm the only doctor interested in developing a comprehensive program where we can address Dupuytren's Contractor in the early phases of the disease,” said Dr. Ballo.
“There's a lot of good websites. There's Dupuytren's forums. There's a Facebook community that's called DART. D. A. R. T. Stands for Dupuytren's Advocates for Radiation Therapy,” said Gray.
“I'm just very grateful to the team at Saint Francis and Dr. Ballo for providing the service to their patients with this condition."
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