Children with orthopaedic hand conditions are welcome at Shriners Hospitals for Children — Honolulu. Attending physicians of the hand clinics are Michelle James, M.D., Ann Van Heest, M.D., and Gary “Kiki” Blum, M.D., who recently opened a regular hand clinic at the hospital.
The Laus of Nu'uanu came to see Dr. Blum at the Honolulu Shriners Hospital when their youngest child, Daniel, 6, was born. He has a congenital hand condition called symbrachydactyly that caused the middle three fingers of his left hand to grow into nubs. Children born with symbracydactyly have small or missing fingers, or a missing hand. Symbrachydactyly is the most common type of hand or arm deficiency, but the exact cause is unknown.
“As a mother, I was worried about what my son couldn’t do, but Dr. Blum eased my fears, ” said Noelle Lau.
Daniel gets regular check-ups with Dr. Blum who decided that he has good function of his hand so surgery was unnecessary.
“My favorite phrase from Dr. Blum that will forever stick with me is, ‘There's lots we can do to him, but would we really be doing it for him?” said Daniel’s father, David. Daniel is an energetic kid who can swing from the monkey bars and as his parents joke can be a “handful” and is proud of his “lucky hand.”
The Laus' also have brought their two older children to the Honolulu Shriners Hospital for visits at the injury clinic. “Everyone from the receptionist to the doctors to the X-ray technicians is so welcoming,” said Mrs. Lau.