Deformity correction is a procedure to straighten a bone that is bent or twisted in a way that is not normal. After the bone is straightened, the arm, leg, or foot has normal alignment and function. Deformities can be corrected in two different ways:
All at once during a surgical procedure, which is called acute correction.
Slowly over the course of several weeks or months, called gradual correction.
Now, deformity correction surgery is quite a minimal surgery and with some basic preparations and precautions that are taken before and after the surgery, there won’t be any problem. A few commonly asked questions about deformity correction surgery are:
- What could prevent a bone deformity from being corrected?
If patients do not attend physical therapy sessions or perform their home exercises, their muscle strength and range of motion could be affected and the doctor may ask them to stop treatment. Muscle contracture or nerve problems can also cause the doctor to stop the deformity correction process.
- Do arms and legs that have deformity correction function well after treatment?
Adults and children typically have very active lives after deformity correction surgery. Our patients have achieved increased function (better walking/gait), improved muscle strength and maintained their range of motion (flexibility). A large part of the success depends on having experienced surgeons, support staff and physical therapists working together with motivated patients through every stage of the process. The role of physical therapy cannot be over emphasized; patients may need to attend physical therapy sessions multiple times per week to maintain range of motion and muscle strength during the distraction phase.
Healing time required after spinal deformity treatment will vary with each patient. However, most are able to walk usually with some assistance the day of surgery. To ensure proper healing, patients will need to undergo at least some physical therapy, and the full benefits of surgery may take some time to realize, although most report pain relief immediately after surgery. Most patients will also have to go through follow up visits to ensure that the bone graft and instrumentation are healing properly.