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The Bone & Joint Journal
Vol. 101-B, Issue 9 | Pages 1168 - 1176
1 Sep 2019
Calder PR McKay JE Timms AJ Roskrow T Fugazzotto S Edel P Goodier WD


The Precice intramedullary limb-lengthening system has demonstrated significant benefits over external fixation lengthening methods, leading to a paradigm shift in limb lengthening. This study compares outcomes following antegrade and retrograde femoral lengthening in both adolescent and adult patients.

Patients and Methods

A retrospective review of prospectively collected data was undertaken of a consecutive series of 107 femoral lengthening operations in 92 patients. In total, 73 antegrade nails and 34 retrograde nails were inserted. Outcome was assessed by the regenerate healing index (HI), hip and knee range of movement (ROM), and the presence of any complications.

Bone & Joint Research
Vol. 7, Issue 7 | Pages 476 - 484
1 Jul 2018
Panagiotopoulou VC Davda K Hothi HS Henckel J Cerquiglini A Goodier WD Skinner J Hart A Calder PR


The Precice nail is the latest intramedullary lengthening nail with excellent early outcomes. Implant complications have led to modification of the nail design. The aim of this study was to perform a retrieval study of Precice nails following lower-limb lengthening and to assess macroscopical and microscopical changes to the implants and evaluate differences following design modification, with the aim of identifying potential surgical, implant, and patient risk factors.


A total of 15 nails were retrieved from 13 patients following lower-limb lengthening. Macroscopical and microscopical surface damage to the nails were identified. Further analysis included radiology and micro-CT prior to sectioning. The internal mechanism was then analyzed with scanning electron microscopy and energy dispersive x-ray spectroscopy to identify corrosion.

The Journal of Bone & Joint Surgery British Volume
Vol. 91-B, Issue 7 | Pages 962 - 967
1 Jul 2009
Aston WJS Calder PR Baker D Hartley J Hill RA

We present a retrospective review of a single-surgeon series of 30 consecutive lengthenings in 27 patients with congenital short femur using the Ilizarov technique performed between 1994 and 2005.

The mean increase in length was 5.8 cm/18.65% (3.3 to 10.4, 9.7% to 48.8%), with a mean time in the frame of 223 days (75 to 363). By changing from a distal to a proximal osteotomy for lengthening, the mean range of knee movement was significantly increased from 98.1° to 124.2° (p = 0.041) and there was a trend towards a reduced requirement for quadricepsplasty, although this was not statistically significant (p = 0.07). The overall incidence of regenerate deformation or fracture requiring open reduction and internal fixation was similar in the distal and proximal osteotomy groups (56.7% and 53.8%, respectively). However, in the proximal osteotomy group, pre-placement of a Rush nail reduced this rate from 100% without a nail to 0% with a nail (p < 0.001). When comparing a distal osteotomy with a proximal one over a Rush nail for lengthening, there was a significant decrease in fracture rate from 58.8% to 0% (p = 0.043).

We recommend that in this group of patients lengthening of the femur with an Ilizarov construct be carried out through a proximal osteotomy over a Rush nail. Lengthening should also be limited to a maximum of 6 cm during one treatment, or 20% of the original length of the femur, in order to reduce the risk of complications.