What is Limb Deformity?

Limb deformity can occur in children in adults and often involves a leg length discrepancy and/or an angular deformity in a limb.  

Limb Reconstruction is the subspecialty area of Orthopedic Surgery that treats Limb Deformity. It involves deformity assessment, planning and surgical management through various methods.  Limb Reconstruction is most well known for limb lengthening and deformity correction using external fixation devices such as Ilizarov, Taylor Spatial Frame (TSF) and intramedullary devices (inside boney canal).  These devices, amongst others, are tools to address some of the most challenging orthopedic problems.  

In children that are still growing, we can often use minimally invasive methods to guide growth an correct deformity as the limb grows. This is called 'guided growth'.  

Limb reconstruction requires an individualized approach since each patient has a unique condition, with many factors to be considered.  

Examples of patients that may benefit from Limb Reconstruction include:

-limb length difference from childhood trauma or infection

-fractures that have never healed (non-unions)

-fractures that have healed in an incorrect position (mal-unions)

-fractures that have resulted in bone loss and shortening

-congenital leg length differences (eg. fibular hemimelia)

-patients with severe angular deformities - eg. knock-knees (genu valgum) 

Please refer to the side links for further information on various treatments and you can also refer to these helpful resources:

Limb Reconstruction Resource (Royal Childrens Hospital)

Taylor Spatial Frame

Precice Lengthening Nail