By shaambhavi Occupational & Physical Therapy Aids
The Truth behind Limb Lengthening Procedures
Over the past decade, the limb lengthening procedure has gained a lot of popularity. It is a sure shot method to get taller by almost 3 inches as compared to the marginally successful methods of diets, HGH, height gain programs and massages. The limb lengthening procedure can make you taller at any age. However, this lucrative procedure is long, tiresome, expensive and extremely painful with high risk of complications.
What is limb lengthening surgery?
This is a surgical procedure where your shin bones are broken and a telescoping rod is inserted. These rods gradually pull your bones apart as new bones. The space is filled by nerves, blood vessels, skin and muscle growth. The rod is able to pull the muscles about one millimetre everyday. The bones are so pulled apart that they continue to grow but in a fast manner so they do not heal completely. The entire process occurs in about three months. It is then followed by three to six months of consistent and demanding physical therapy.
Recovery and management of pain
The entire process is excruciatingly painful. As a result, proper pain management is essential. However, the intake of painkillers is restricted as the anti-inflammatory drugs actually slow down the growth of bones. This means that the entire process has to be borne by the individual with minimal pain elimination medication.
Since there is minimal pain easing medication, the physical therapy is extremely painful. A lot of patients prefer quitting but the omission of the therapy can extend the recovery almost twice or thrice than the normal duration of three to six months. It can also prevent the bones from gaining strength so there are chances that they may break even.
Also, getting a good amount of sleep is essential for the proper development of the bones but with intense pain, it may be hard to get good sleep. The sleeping pills may work initially but they are not safe and may eventually stop affecting.
The risks and complications associated
There are substantial risks associated with this procedure, just like any surgery. The risk ratio is very high, about 25%.
The possible risks are:
- Bone infection
- Nerve/blood vessel injury
- Injury in muscles/tendons
- Improper or slow bone healing
- Unequal lengthening of bones
However, the long term complications are very rare. Some surgeons claim almost 0% negative long term effects. They insist the procedure is safe.
Surgery: Yay or nay?
The limb lengthening surgery costs around $85,000 in America. However, it is considerably cheaper abroad. China, Brazil and Russia offer the procedure in between $15,000 to $30,000. In India, the procedure costs around $10,000. However, before taking such a massive and life altering decision, one must consider all aspects.
It is likely that the individual would need expenses of nearly a year as he will be unproductive and unable to work during this time. However excruciating the pain maybe, it will be a dream come true for three inches to a short person. It is really a lot and will boost your confidence and appearance enormously. You must be willing to risk the pain and complications though!