Limb length discrepancy (LLD) is a condition of unequal lengths of the lower limbs. The discrepancy may be in the femur, or tibia, or both. Slight differences in limb length is fairly common; however, a significant difference between two legs can affect a patient’s well being and quality of life.
Causes of Limb Length Discrepancy
Limb length discrepancies can be congenital (present at birth) or they can develop after a fracture or a traumatic injury. A child may suffer an injury that damages their growth plate. As the child continues to grow, their limb length discrepancy can slowly increase.
Limb length discrepancies can also be caused from infections, tumors, the result of chronic fractures, congenital abnormalities, malunions, or nonunions. Limb length discrepancies affect adults as well as children.1
The PRECICE device is a magnetic implant prescribed by your doctor to lengthen your tibia or femur. You may benefit from this treatment if you have a limb length discrepancy. You should discuss your condition with your doctor.
The PRECICE device is surgically implanted into one of the bones of the leg (femur or tibia) to lengthen it. The lengthening occurs when the hand held remote control unit is activated directly over the implant.
Lengthening sessions typically occur several times a day, in very small increments, until the leg has achieved the prescribed length. The PRECICE implant holds the bones together until the body makes new bone to fill in the gap. During the consolidation phase, the bone heals. Your bone will change, or regenerate, from a soft material into hard bone over time. During this healing phase, it is very important that you follow all of your healthcare professional’s instructions. Throughout your treatment, you will continue to visit your doctor. The PRECICE implant is removed from the femur or tibia after mature bone formation has occurred, which is typically within 12 months after initial implantation.
Patient Success Story: Renee Voss
Renee Voss was diagnosed with Right Fibular Hemimelia. In 2012, Dr. Standard called about a new technology that he believed would help Renee. Renee was the first patient to have PRECICE implanted in both her femur and tibia that year. After three months, her leg had been successfully lengthened to 6.6cm. She was able to get back to her adventure, called life.
- American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons
Parents and Patients: www.orthoinfo.aaos.org/topic.cfm?topic=a00259
- Limb Lengthening and Reconstruction Society
Parents and Patients: http://www.llrs.org/patienteducation.shtml
1. www.orthoinfo.aaos.org, see Limb Length Discrepancy
The materials on this website are for your general educational information only. Information you read on this website cannot replace the relationship that you have with your healthcare professional. We do not practice medicine or provide medical services or advice as a part of this website. You should always talk to your healthcare professional for diagnosis and treatment.
Rx Only. The PRECICE® Intramedullary Limb Lengthening (IMLL) System is composed of an implantable intramedullary nail, locking screws, reusable instruments, and a hand-held External Remote Controller (ERC). The PRECICE nail is a sterile single use device that is surgically implanted using the instruments and locking screws. The ERC is used daily after implantation to non-invasively lengthen or shorten the implant to a prescribed length. The PRECICE System is intended for limb lengthening of the femur and tibia. Contraindications include infection or pathologic conditions of bone such as osteopenia which would impair the ability to securely fix the device, metal allergies and sensitivities, patients whose distance from the surface of the treated limb to the intramedullary canal is greater than 51 mm for the 10.7 and 12.5 mm diameter implants or greater than 38 mm for the 8.5 mm diameter implant, patients with an irregular bone diameter that would prevent insertion of the PRECICE nail, patients in which the PRECICE nail would cross joint spaces or open epiphyseal growth plates, patients in which there is an obliterated medullary canal or other conditions that tend to retard healing such as blood supply limitations, peripheral vascular disease or evidence of inadequate vascularity, patients unwilling or incapable of following postoperative care instructions, patients weighing in excess of 114 Kg for the 10.7 and 12.5 mm diameter implants (models A-G, H, J, K, and U) or weighing in excess of 57 Kg for the 8.5 and 10.7 mm diameter implants models (A-G, H, J, K, U, N, M ,P, and Q). The implantable device is only to be used by a trained licensed physician. Please refer to the PRECICE IMLL System instructions for use for complete Important Safety Information. Caution: Federal law restricts this device to sale by or on the order of a physician.