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Transverse or longitudinal? A survey of volar wrist incision preferences.

Authors
  • Siow, Benjamin Rui Sheng1
  • Tong, Claudia Ren Hwee1
  • Satku, Mala2
  • Sechachalam, Sreedharan2
  • Yeo, Chong Jin3
  • 1 Lee Kong Chian School of Medicine, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore. , (Singapore)
  • 2 Hand and Microsurgery Section, Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, Tan Tock Seng Hospital, Singapore. , (Singapore)
  • 3 Hand Surgery Associates, Mount Elizabeth Novena Specialist Centre, Singapore. , (Singapore)
Type
Published Article
Journal
Singapore Medical Journal
Publisher
Singapore Medical Journal
Publication Date
Oct 01, 2020
Volume
61
Issue
10
Pages
548–550
Identifiers
DOI: 10.11622/smedj.2020023
PMID: 31535152
Source
Medline
Keywords
Language
English
License
Unknown

Abstract

In volar wrist surgery, the traditional longitudinal incision leaves a scar that may be considered cosmetically unpleasant. Recent studies suggest that transverse wrist incisions result in more aesthetically pleasing scars that are well hidden in the wrist crease. The aim of our study was to explore the public's perceptions of longitudinal versus transverse wrist scars. A prospective survey was conducted among the general public. Inclusion criteria were patients aged over 18 years with no prior surgery to the wrist. Survey questions assessed included: (a) longitudinal or transverse scar preference; (b) reasons for preference; and (c) demographic information. There were 107 respondents from the general public. More respondents preferred longitudinal scars. Top three reasons for longitudinal scar preference were: (a) perceived damage to wrist structures by a transverse incision; (b) better cosmesis; and (c) scar from the transverse incision appearing like a self-inflicted injury. Top three reasons for transverse scar preference were: (a) easily concealed by accessories; (b) less noticeable; and (c) better cosmesis. Respondents aged 60 years and above were most concerned about possible damage to wrist structures; younger respondents were most concerned that transverse scars appeared like self-inflicted injuries. Respondents from the general public preferred a longitudinal scar to a transverse one. Younger respondents were most concerned about how the transverse scar appeared like a self-inflicted injury while older respondents were most concerned with perceived functional implications of the incisions. Copyright: © Singapore Medical Association.

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