Limb lengthening and reconstruction techniques can be used to replace missing bone
and to lengthen and/or straighten deformed bone segments. These procedures may
be performed in both children and adults who have limb length discrepancies due to
birth defects, disease, or injury.
The limb lengthening and deformity correction process works on the principle of
distraction osteogenesis. This is a revolutionary concept, reversing the long-held
belief that bone could not be regenerated. With this process, a bone that has been
cut during surgery is gradually distracted (pulled apart), leading to new bone formation
(osteogenesis) at the site of the lengthening. In this way, bone segments can be
lengthened by 15 to 100% of their original length.
Click here to find out more about limb lengthening and reconstruction
If you have any Orthopaedic conditions and would like to be advised on the most
appropriate treatment or advice, please call 1300 1 JOINTs (56468) during office
hours to arrange an appointment.
Once you and your Doctor decide that surgery will help you, you’ll need to learn what to
expect from the surgery and create a treatment plan for the best results afterward.
Preparing mentally and physically for surgery is an important step toward a successful
result. Understanding the process and your role in it will help you recover more quickly
and have fewer problems.
Click here to download our consent form to print and bring with you before surgery.
Working with Your Doctor
Before surgery, your doctor will give you a complete physical examination to
make sure you don’t have any conditions that could interfere with the surgery or
its outcome. Routine tests, such as blood tests and X-rays, are usually performed
a week before any major surgery.
Discuss any medications you are taking with your doctor and your family physician
to see which ones you should stop taking before surgery.
Discuss with your doctor options for preparing for potential blood replacement,
including donating your own blood, medical interventions and other treatments,
prior to surgery.
If you are overweight, losing weight before surgery will help decrease the stress
you place on your new joint. However, you should not diet during the month before
If you are taking aspirin or anti-inflammatory medications or warfarin or any drugs
that increase the risk of bleeding you will need to stop taking them one week before
surgery to minimise bleeding.
If you smoke, you should stop or cut down to reduce your surgery risks and
improve your recovery.
Have any tooth, gum, bladder or bowel problems treated before surgery to reduce
the risk of infection later.
Eat a well-balanced diet, supplemented by a daily multivitamin with iron.
Report any infections to your surgeon. Surgery cannot be performed until all
infections have cleared up.
Arrange for someone to help out with everyday tasks like cooking, shopping and
Put items that you use often within easy reach before surgery so you won’t have to
reach and bend as often.
Remove all loose carpets and tape down electrical cords to avoid falls.
Make sure you have a stable chair with a firm seat cushion, a firm back and two arms.
If you are having Day Surgery, remember the following:
Have someone available to take you home, you will not be able to drive for at
least 24 hours.
Do Not drink or eat anything in the car on the trip home.
The combination of anaesthesia, food, and car motion can quite often cause
nausea or vomiting. After arriving home, wait until you are hungry before trying
to eat. Begin with a light meal and try to avoid greasy food for the first 24 hours.
If you had surgery on an extremity (leg, knee, hand or elbow), keep that extremity
elevated and use ice as directed. This will help decrease swelling and pain.
Take your pain medicine as directed. Begin the pain medicine as you start getting
uncomfortable, but before you are in severe pain. If you wait to take your pain
medication until the pain is severe, you will have more difficulty controlling the pain.