Kindling Collaborative Care for Children with Radial Longitudinal Deficiency and Thumb Hypoplasia

Date/Time: Fri, October 2, 2020 8:00 AM to 9:00 AM


The spectrum of radial longitudinal deficiency (RLD), including thumb hypoplasia, can present challenges to the hand therapist involved in an affected child’s non-operative or post-operative care. Because most surgical procedures are performed in regional pediatric hand centers, families often travel from their home communities to receive such care. Consequently, the child frequently requires therapy services in their home community to supplement treatment that was initiated at the pediatric hand center. The focus of this session is to familiarize hand therapists from all settings with the conservative and surgical treatment options for this patient population. Imparting this knowledge will facilitate more coordinated care for children with these conditions who receive both community and specialist pediatric hand care. This session will use case examples and include thorough discussion of the conditions and evidenced-based surgical and therapeutic interventions. Session attendees will also be invited to engage in discussion of strategies to improve the coordination of care for children with these conditions.


  • Describe radial longitudinal deficiency (RLD) and thumb hypoplasia including their etiology, pathophysiology, and classification

  • Describe the hand therapist’s role in functional assessment to inform surgical decision-making

  • Explain surgical options and the clinical findings that are indicators for surgery

  • Discuss therapeutic intervention for RLD and thumb hypoplasia, including both conservative and post-surgical management

  • Illustrate a collaborative decision making model for facilitating family centered care for children with RLD and thumb hypoplasia