ePlasty: Vol. 8
Glomus Tumors of the Hand
Ron Hazani, MD, John M. Houle, MD, Morton L. Kasdan, MD, and Bradon J. Wilhelmi, MD

Division of Plastic Surgery, University of Louisville School of Medicine, Louisville, KY


Correspondence: Ronmdsurg@hotmail.com

Objective: The purpose of this study is to present a review of the current understanding of glomus tumors of the hand. Methods: Clinical cases are used to demonstrate the relevance of history and physical examination in deriving the diagnosis of this rare, but important entity. Treatment, complications, and review of the literature are presented. Results: Glomus tumors are rare vascular lesions representing approximately 1% of all hand tumors. Derived from the glomus body, they are usually found at the tip of digits and present as a classic triad of severe pain, point tenderness, and cold sensitivity. Clinical features include blue discoloration, palpable nodule, and nail deformity in subungual tumors. The Hildreth's test and the Love's pin test are reliable methods of diagnosing glomus hand tumors with sensitivity and specificity exceeding 90%. Surgical excision is the treatment of choice. Possible complications following operative management include recurrence and nail deformity. Conclusion: This article outlines the current knowledge relating to the pathophysiology, diagnosis, and treatment of glomus tumors of the hand.