Difference between Traditional Concepts and Dr Xia's Concept on Leg Lengthening Surgery
1. Traditional concepts:
Traditional leg-lengthening surgery is simply bone lengthening surgery, without considering the effects on soft tissues. The prolonged traction force applied to the bone ends will effect the circulations and mechanical balance of bone, joints and surrounding soft tissues, hence cause malfunctions of adjacent joints, muscles and ligaments. Although Ilizarov techniques have achieved some outstanding results, the overall quality of leg-lengthening surgery is far from what patients (especially the cosmetic surgery) expected. Therefore, many leading experts on Ilizarov techniques and external fixation do not encourage performing leg-lengthening surgery for normal adults for the cosmetic purposes. Some experts still consider this sort of surgery "very dangerous", and the slow recovery period rate following leg-lengthening surgery (1cm/45-60 days) was not acceptable by many patients. The complications associated with traditional leg-lengthening surgery are: deformed new bone; limb discrepancy; joint dislocation; joint stiffness, joint cartilage injury, painful limbs (muscles). Some of these complications may occur during the treatment or after the treatment, even years after the treatment. These complications have caused considerable sufferings to the patients, and also some resistance on this technique to be accepted among the medical professions. Therefore, a reformed technique that minimise these above mentioned complications is of great need.
2. Xia's concept:
Xia's leg-lengthening techniques are originated from Ilizarov theories, but it was completely reformed in terms of concepts and surgical techniques. Induced tissue and bone regeneration, and reconstruction of limb function naturally is the key principles of Xia's concept. Dr. Xia & Dr Peng have redefined the leg-lengthening surgery by using combined external and internal fixation techniques, he has refined the external fixator to allow dynamics and synchronism during lengthening, that have greatly reduced the complications during leg-lengthening treatment. This is the fundamental difference between Xia's leg-lengthening surgery and the traditional leg-lengthening techniques. Dr. Peng has performed leg-lengthening surgery using his techniques on more than 1,000 patients with less than 1% patients experienced any complications.