COSMETIC LIMB LENGTHENING
Are you struggling with insecurities because of your height? Is your confidence shattered every time someone towers over you? Or you just feel deep in your heart that your height isn’t just right for you? If you have answered “yes” to any of these questions, Dr Dimitrios Giotikas at Athens BJR (Athens Bone & Joint Reconstruction Centre), may be able to help.
Through cosmetic limb lengthening, Dr Giotikas can safely and permanently increase the body height up to 4 inches with a single surgery (or up to 6 inches, with combined surgeries) and help people with height dysphoria or constitutional short stature in their pursuit to become taller, improve their self-esteem, improve their prospects of success in life and gain the confidence they have always deserved.
Dr. Giotikas is one of the few surgeons in the world, specializing in limb lengthening, stature increase and deformity correction. He has worked for many years in some of the most renowned institutions in the world and he is fully registered, revalidated and licensed to practice Orthopaedics in the United Kingdom and Greece.
What is Cosmetic Limb Lengthening
Limb lengthening is a surgical procedure that lengthens the bones in the leg or arm. There are many medical reasons why such a procedure might be indicated; when it is done in the legs for the mere purpose of increasing the body height of an otherwise functionally healthy person it is called “cosmetic”.
The lengthening of the bone is done with a principle called “distraction osteogenesis”. The principle is not new, it has been around since the 1950’s. In the last 20 years, with the development of sophisticated orthopaedic implants it became much more comfortable, predictable, and safer.
The principle of Distraction osteogenesis dictates that when a long bone (thigh or shin) is surgically broken (osteotomized) in the operating room and, in the following weeks, the two parts of the bone are slowly (with a rate of around 1mm per day) pushed away from each other (distracted), new bone tissue is gradually formed in the developing gap. The new bone identical to normal, healthy, bone; with the same quality and strength. Distraction osteogenesis is basically harnessing a natural healing response of the human body, i.e., the ability of a broken bone to heal with new, normal bone and directing it towards a desired outcome (lengthening of the bone).
The surgery is done under general or spinal anaesthesia or a combination of both. After the bone is osteotomized, it is held in place (fixed) with orthopaedic implants or devices that provide stability for the patients to mobilize but also guide the gradual distraction of the two parts of the bone.
Traditionally, from the 50s until the 90’s only external devices (called Ilizarov frames) were used for holding and distracting the bones. Since the late 90’s internal telescopically lengthening nails have been introduced to clinical use.
In Athens BJR, we use all available methods for lengthening. In addition, we are one of the very few centers that have been granted approval for the use of x-os G-nail; no other center in the USA or UK or Asia have access to this unique implant. G-nail allows walking with full weight bearing form the first day after surgery so you can remain independent during your lengthening. Also, G-nail is the only commercially available implant that allows lengthening up to 10cm.
What to expect after the surgery
-After the surgery it takes approximately 2-3 months for the lengthening to complete. During this period, minor problems like joint stiffness and muscle atrophy may occur; these are usually temporary and easily managed.
– You may experience mild to moderate pain during short periods of the day (i.e., after physio, or if you walk too much or sometimes in the night but it is usually easily managed with painkillers.
– With x-os nail or external frames you can remain independent.
– Desk based job can be resumed 2 weeks post-surgery.
– During this phase you will need to exercise daily at home and at a physiotherapy center 4 times per week. You will need to do exercises and see the doctor every 2-3 weeks to monitor your progress and recovery. You will take medications for the pain, bone healing and blood clots.
– After the completion of lengthening the bone continues to harden and consolidate and the muscles gradually adapt to the new length. – For usual lengthening goals you should anticipate that it will take 5-6 months (from surgery) before you are back to your normal routine of daily activities the way you know it now and 10 months for sport activities.
Should I Get Height Enhancement?
Anyone unhappy with their height should consider cosmetic limb lengthening. Shorter stature often causes body image anxiety and low self-esteem. The effects of height dysphoria affect the social, professional, and romantic aspects of a persons’ life. If your short stature has become an unmanageable psychological burden, you could be benefited from cosmetic limb lengthening.
Am I a good candidate for cosmetic limb lengthening?
On a physical level you must be healthy, a non- smoker, and have a fully matured skeletal system.
On a mental level, it is important to be well prepared, motivated, and committed to the surgery as well as the recovery process.
Candidates are thoroughly assessed, both physically and mentally, before they are accepted for treatment. This is done with appropriate medical questionnaires, x-rays, and scans. Generally speaking, if you are healthy without a significant medical history of conditions which could compromise your body’s defences or healing potential, you are not smoking and you do not suffer from mental conditions which could affect your capacity for decision making and your ability to comply with instructions, then you could be a good candidate for cosmetic limb lengthening.
How can I prepare for cosmetic limb lengthening in Athens?
The procedure starts with an introductory free 15 min consultation via skype or zoom. During this consultation Dr Giotikas gets to know you and discusses introductory information in order to help you understand how to approach the whole treatment. Any burning questions you might have will also be discussed.
After that, the standard pre-op consultation follows. This can be done either online or physically in Athens; you are welcome to come visit us in advance. It can be done anytime between 11 months and 6 weeks before your preferred timeframe for surgery. When you book your appointment, we will ask you to complete medical questionnaires about your physical and mental history and current condition. During the consultation Dr Giotikas will discuss your options about implants and devices, the surgery, the timeline of recovery, lengthening goals, and body proportions, expected outcome, potential risks and how we prevent them and any other question you might have. After your consultation we will email you our suggested treatment plan, a price quote, available dates for treatment, and other useful information about your trip. X-rays and other scans may be requested at this stage if the doctor deems it necessary. When the treatment plan is agreed, you will start preparing for your trip to Athens. Most patients search and book their own flights. We can help you find an accommodation in Athens. We can help you with your visa application if you come from a country that requires visa to enter EU/Schengen/ Greece.
Please arrange to stay in Athens for as long as you can after the surgery, ideally for the whole lengthening period of 2-3 months. The minimum necessary stay in Athens is 4 weeks after surgery if you return home with a short-haul flight (less than 4 hours), and 6 weeks if your return flight is longer.
Following the surgery, you will go through the latency phase which lasts 6 to 9 days. During this stage the bones are given the time they need to initiate the healing process.
Following the latency period comes the distraction (or lengthening phase, i.e., the phase when your bones lengthen, which lasts 2,5-3 months.
Once you have achieved the desired amount of lengthening, the distraction phase is completed, and the consolidation phase begins. During this time the new bone (it is called “regenerate”) is allowed to harden, in a process that takes approximately 6 months.
Dr Giotikas will be monitoring you during each phase, ensuring everything goes as planned.
During the lengthening phase in Athens, you will see the doctor and do x-rays every 2-3 weeks. After your repatriation you will still need to do x-rays every 2 weeks.
Our certified nurses, Evi and Billy will be visiting you at your accommodation place in Athens to help you become independent as soon as possible. Our exclusive team will help you with the practicalities of everyday living whilst in Greece.
The beautiful and relaxing surroundings of sunny Athens, the appropriate leisure activities, and the carefully planned diet, along with the satisfying feeling that your daily efforts during physio sessions pay off, will contribute into maintaining a positive, holiday-type mood. That way, improvement is noticeable very soon!
Athens BJR also offers you the option to complete your recovery in your residence. After six weeks you may travel back to your country of residence and attend 1 online physical therapy sessions per week, with our affiliated physio team in Baltimore, United States.
For most people cosmetic limb lengthening is approached as an investment that they decide to do in order to get a worthy return in the personal or professional aspects of their life.
In Athens BJR we abide to Dr Giotikas’s principle of “providing care affordable to the many, there is no reason to develop sophisticated treatments if only a few can afford them”
We also understand the importance of predictability of cost of treatment especially for people traveling abroad for treatments. For these reasons we have put together treatment packages which include everything and anything that a patient will need during their stay in Athens
Cost & Pricing
- Femoral lengthening with PRECISE-2 nails: 40.310 Euro
- Femoral lengthening with X-Os G-(Guichet) nails: 47.845 Euro
- Femoral lengthening with STRYDE* nails: 47.445 Euro
- Tibia lengthening with PRECISE-2 nails: 42.400 Euro
- Tibia lengthening with STRYDE* nails: 48.535 Euro
- Tibia lengthening with TSF (Smith & Nephew) circular frames: 25.315 Euro
- Tibia lengthening with TSF (Smith & Nephew) and Synthes Expert nail (LATN): 37.200 Euro
- Hybrid Internal External Tibia lengthening HYBIEX (learn more): 41.800 Euro
What is included in the above prices:
- Pre-operative checks (blood tests, scans, and anaesthetic assessment in Athens.)
- Post-operative follow-up x-rays until completion of lengthening.
- Full board hospital stay for 4 nights in a 3-bed bedroom.
- Post-operative medications until completion of lengthening (Blood thinners, painkillers, vitamin D).
- Medical fees (Surgeon, Anaesthetist,).
- Inpatient physiotherapy daily sessions after surgery until discharge from the hospital.
- Outpatient physiotherapy sessions until completion of lengthening (4 times per week for 2 hours each session).
- Crutches, wheelchair, and shower stool.
- Rehabilitation aids as needed (elastic bands, CPM machine, Orthotics, Antigravity treadmill).
- Outpatient nursing support and care as needed on a daily basis (except Sundays) during your stay at our affiliated hotels after your discharge from the hospital.
What is NOT included
- Accommodation in Athens.
- Travel expenses to and from Athens.
- Transportations in Athens.
- Food and other supplies during your stay in Athens.
- Entertainment and/or Internet costs.
- Interpreter’s/Translator’s fee (when applicable)
- **Prices may change without prior notice
” …Thank you again for all of your highly skilled, caring, thoughtful, kind dedication. It has been a great honour to have met you and to have you as my consultant … “
JH, United Kingdom
“…Finally, I don’t think I ever properly thanked you. I never thought I would be where I am today and I think going to Athens was one of the best decisions I made.”
“…Professional and caring, he will spend time with you to make sure your confident with the process and all your needs are met. Very helpful.”
iwantgreatcare, Cambridge, UK
Contact Athens BJR
If your short stature is keeping you from enjoying the best in life, Dr. Dimitrios Giotikas can help you safely overcome your insecurities and achieve your goal of becoming taller, by utilizing his substantial specialized experience with state-of-the-art equipment and technology. Call us today at (+30) 210 9117000 to learn more about cosmetic height enhancement treatment and how it can change your life.