Patient Case History: Nicole

Femur Lengthening and Bowleg Deformity Correction


Patient Surgeon: Austin T. Fragomen, MD
Nicole is a 23 year old woman who was in motor vehicle accident. She sustained an open right femur fracture that required multiple surgeries and left knee ligament damage. She came to the Limb Lengthening and Complex Reconstruction Service 5 years after the injury with problems in the right leg. The right femur was shorter by 1 inch, bowed by 7 degrees, and externally rotated by 10 degrees. She also had pain from the screws around her knee. The xray shows the shortening of the right femur and the varus deformity as well as the screws. Another xray was taken showing her standing on a block to even-out her leg lengths. The difference in the knee heights is evident.


Dr. Fragomen performed surgery to lengthen the femur and correct the bowing deformity. He did this by cutting the femur bone in two places and inserting a rod to hold the bone straight. An external fixator was then used to gradually stretch the bone longer letting it slide over the internal rod.


The final xrays show the bone fully healed and straight. Nicole is fully recovered and very pleased. Her leg looks and performs much better than before.

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