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Importance of Mechanical Axis During Limb Lengthening

Updated: May 26

Cosmetic Limb lengthening surgery requires attention to details to get perfect result. All the patients from all over the world who wish to have this surgery wants to be taller but it is surgeon's ethical duty to provide this surgery as natural as possible to the patient, so the patient can return to his daily life as like before after healing period. Every orthopedic surgeon can perform this surgery but as you can imagine there is huge difference between experienced and inexperienced surgeons. If your surgeon do not pay attention to the #mechanicalaxis during implantation of intramedullary nails, lengthening it self will cause #Varus (#bowlegs) or #Valgus (#KnockKnees). Cable method is the most practical way to control the mechanical axis intra-operatively.

Femoral lengthening with intramedullary nails can create alterations in the mechanical axis of the legs. This is based on the relationship of the anatomic femur axis to the mechanical femur axis, which is typically 5–9 degrees valgus. We use trigonometric formulas to calculate the predicted change, using the lengths of the tibia, femur, whole limb, the amount of lengthening and the angle between the anatomic and the mechanical axis of the femur.

We recommed to all patient's who wish to have limb lengthening surgery to ask for a full leg length x-ray from before surgery and ask for mechanical axis calculation. When you finish your lengthening take a new full leg length x-ray and then check for mechanical axis again.