Most adults go about their day without any thought to height. They can reach the top shelf, drive any size car, and feel confident on dates. Some people, on the other hand, go through their day feeling the burden of being too short. This can reap havoc on a person's social life, reduce confidence, and in some case, even cause depression.
If this sounds familiar, you might be thinking about height lengthening surgery. Maybe you have heard that you can grow up to six inches or that you need to wear leg braces. You might be interested to know how the surgery works in the first place. Here is everything you can expect before, during, and after leg lengthening surgery.
What to Expect Before Leg Lengthening Surgery
The first step to reaching your height dreams is to make an appointment with an orthopedic surgeon that specializes in height lengthening. You want to make sure the person doing the procedure has the experience needed to get the most out of your surgery.
At your first appointment, you will learn more about what to expect and anything your doctor needs you to do beforehand. In some cases, your doctor will recommend lifestyle changes like diet and exercise to ensure you are healthy enough to undergo the procedure. Following these instructions now will help in recovery later.
How the Surgery Is Performed
Once you have talked with your surgeon and you know what you can expect from the surgery, it's time to get started. When you are ready for the operation, you will be given a general anesthetic chosen by your orthopedic surgeon. This will allow you to sleep through your surgery without any pain.
Next, your doctor will make a small incision in the front of your knee or by the hip and cut through the width of the bone that is to be lengthened. The bone being operated on will be chosen before the surgery and will be either the femur (thigh) or the tibia (shin). Once the bone has been cut into two sections, the adjustable "nail" is fitted inside the center of the bone. It will then be secured with locking screws. The incision is then closed up.
During the next several weeks to months, the bones will be slowly and gently pulled apart. This separation allows the bones to grow a little every day until the maximum height is reached.
Recovery After Leg Lengthening Surgery
During the recovery period after height lengthening surgery, a patient can expect to be in some pain. This is normal after any surgery, and your doctor will use medication to help manage discomfort. You will also need physical therapy to help your muscles, ligaments, and tendons lengthen along with the bones.
During this period, you will need to follow all of your post-surgery instructions to ensure you get the most out of the operation. These instructions will likely include calcium and vitamin D supplements to help speed up bone production. You will also need to go to each follow-up appointment to allow your doctor to assess your progress and make changes if necessary.
Life After Height Lengthening Surgery
After height lengthening surgery, your life will feel different. You will be noticeably taller. Most patients have more confidence in their daily life. Some patients can do basic daily functions without assistance for the first time in their lives.
If you are interested in more information about leg lengthening surgery, contact us today. We are leaders in the procedure and can help you better understand your options.