Based on your child's assessment, their care team from the Limb Lengthening and Reconstruction Center will develop an individualized treatment plan and therapy program to optimize the function of their arm or leg. Following treatment, most patients have good mobility and can participate in typical daily activities, such as playing baseball, basketball and swimming.
Physical therapy is available at our Burnet Campus or at one of our eight conveniently located outpatient centers. If you live outside the greater Cincinnati area, our team will coordinate the therapy plan with your doctors.
Family education and therapeutic exercises are important parts of your treatment. We encourage family involvement during therapy sessions. You will receive the education and support needed to continue therapy at home as you care for your child.
The Corrective Process: External and Internal Options
Limb lengthening and limb correction are techniques that can help to correct irregular bone growth due to birth defects, diseases or injuries. The correction process can be used to replace missing bone and lengthen or straighten deformed bone segments.
The procedure begins by carefully cutting the bone during surgery. The bone that has been cut can be gradually distracted (pulled apart) over time, which leads to new bone formation at the site of the lengthening or correcting. The actual procedure usually requires just several days at the hospital.
The bone is then gradually lengthened at home and corrected over time using an external fixator or an internal lengthening device.
What is an External Fixator?
An external fixator is a device worn outside the body that is connected to the bone with pins. The pins pass through the skin to connect the device to the bone. The external fixator is used to support the bone while it is lengthened or corrected, and it helps the body to move normally while the bone is healing. After the bone has healed, the external fixator is removed in a second surgery.