When the patient prefers to lengthen their arm or leg they can opt for limb lengthening surgery. This is a process that takes several months to complete. It depends on the capacity of regeneration of new bone, tissue, ligaments, blood vessels, and surrounded cells.
This surgery consists of several phases. The first one is known as an osteotomy. In this phase, the surgeon cuts the bone to be lengthened. Later the external fixation devices are used to stabilize the limb.
The second phase is known as the Distraction phase. As the name implies, the bone is pulled apart and hence new bone can be generated at the place of the osteotomy. This process is done 4 times a day to obtain 1mm growth of bone per day. It is continued until the desired length is achieved.
In order to maintain mobility during this phase, the patients can use crutches for walking.